Fox News Tops Cable Ratings for Seventh Straight Week

FNC averages 3.4 million primetime viewers, while second-place ESPN sits at 1.77 million

Last Updated: March 7, 2017 @ 10:24 AM

Fox News Channel was the most-watched basic cable network last week, finishing atop both primetime and total viewers for the seventh straight week.

FNC’s coverage of President Trump’s address to Congress was the highest-rated telecast for the week among all of basic cable with 10.1 million total viewers, helping the channel average 3.4 million primetime viewers for the week of Feb. 27 through March 5.

ESPN finished second among primetime, averaging 1.77 million viewers between 8-11 p.m., while HGTV, MSNBC and USA round out the top five.

Fox News averaged 1.71 million total day viewers, compared to 1.12 million for No. 2 Nickelodeon. HGTV, MSNBC and Adult Swim join FNC and Nickelodeon among the top five, despite failing to crack 1 million viewers on average.

While FNC finished first in both categories and MSNBC finished fourth in both, cable news rival CNN also had a strong week. Jeff Zucker’s news network averaged 1.37 million primetime viewers to finish No. 7 and 794,000 total day viewers to finish sixth.

Fox News’ “The O’Reilly Factor” picked up three of the Top 10 telecasts and the network had 16 of the top 30 telecasts, including various episodes of “The Five,” “The O’Reilly Factor,” “Tucker Carlson Tonight” and “Hannity.”

ESPN’s strong week comes on the heels of news that the sports network will lay off a number of its on-air talent. The list of affected employees is still being finalized, TheWrap has learned. ESPN’s Duke vs. University of North Carolina college basketball game on ESPN on March 4 helped lift the network’s primetime performance for the week.

Fox News’ sister, Fox Business Network, beat rival CNBC during business day by averaging 221,000 viewers compared to 180,000.