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‘Letterman’ Hits 3-Year Local Ratings High With Obama Appearance

Presidential visit yields best numbers for CBS late-night show since September 2012

President Obama gave David Letterman a nice going-away present as the late-night host prepares to exit CBS’s “Late Show With David Letterman.”

Monday night’s episode, which featured Obama’s eighth and final appearance on the program, yielded the best ratings for “Late Show” in more than three years, according to local household data for the top 56 markets.

Airing from 11:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., “Late Show” posted a 3.5 rating/9 share in local ratings — a considerable boost over the previous week’s 2.4/6 as well as the 2.0/5 that the show scored a year ago.

Monday night’s performance also represented the show’s best local ratings since Sept. 18, 2012, when the show posted a 4.0/10.

“Late Late Show With James Corden,” which immediately followed Letterman, also enjoyed a boost Monday night. “Late Late Show” posted a 1.5/5 in local ratings, a double-digit boost over its week-ago performance of 1.2/4, and a solid improvement over the 1.0/4 that the show drew a year ago with Craig Ferguson as host. It was also an improvement over the 1.4/5 that Corden’s premiere as host drew on Mar. 23.

Letterman will sign off after more than two decades as “Late Show” host on May 20. Former “Colbert Report” host Stephen Colbert will step in as his successor in September.