Cable News Ratings: Everyone’s Down and No One Is Happy

Fox News accomplishes what only ESPN has done before

cnn hln fox news msnbc

Fox News Channel is celebrating yet another quarter at No. 1, marking its 50th straight atop total viewers for both total day and primetime.

It joined ESPN as the only two networks to mark the feat — but the accomplishment doesn’t mean the last three months were the strongest for Fox News.

Across total day, Fox News averaged 940,000 total viewers, down 20 percent from 2013. Viewers in the key demographic — 25 to 54 — fell 21 percent to 189,000.

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But the competition was down, too. CNN was second in total viewers with 341,000, a drop of 28 percent, to its lowest quarterly performance ever. The network’s 105,000 demo viewers — down 35 percent — tied for second place with HLN (down 26 percent) and narrowly topped MSNBC’s 103,000 (down 16 percent).

CNN also hit an all-time low in total viewers during its 9 p.m. timeslot.

MSNBC was third in total viewers with 334,000, down seven percent. HLN averaged 247,000 total viewers, a drop of 37 percent.

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In primetime, from 8-11 p.m., Fox News was easily tops in total viewers with 1.6 million and in the key demo, with 265,000. Both numbers were down 16 percent year-over-year, marking the lowest performance in the demo on FNC since the second quarter of 2001 (when it had 163,000).

Second-place MSNBC is down just one percent with 570,000 total viewers. However, in the demo, it was down 17 percent with 159,000.

CNN was in third place with 459,000 total viewers, which dropped 31 percent. In the demo, CNN fell 32 percent to 156,000 viewers. HLN was fourth in both categories for the quarter, falling 34 percent to 340,000 total viewers and 30 percent in the demo to 124,000.

Also read: CNN Is No. 1 Cable News Network – You Just Have to Know Where to Look

Across all of cable, Fox News Channel ranked sixth in primetime total viewers, while its closest competitor, MSNBC, was No. 30.

FNC was seventh in total day total viewers. It’s closest competition was CNN at No. 29.