FNC Completes Third Quarter Beating CNN and MSNBC Combined in Both Categories Across Total Day and Primetime; Marks Highest-Rated Quarter of 2021
FNC’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” “Hannity,” “The Five,” and “The Ingraham Angle” Comprise Top Four Highest-Rated Programs for the Quarter in Total Viewers
“Gutfeld!” Finishes Second Quarter as Second Highest-Rated Late Night Program in All of Broadcast and Cable, Dominates Cable News
NEW YORK – September 28, 2021 – FOX News Channel (FNC) completed the most recent quarter of 2021 as the most-watched network in all of basic cable with total day and primetime viewers, marking FNC’s 25th anniversary delivering its highest-rated quarter of the year in both total viewers and the coveted 25-54 demo. According to Nielsen Media Research, FNC crushed the competition across the board, beating CNN and MSNBC combined in total day and primetime total viewers and the 25-54 demo for both the quarter and month of September. Notching 79 straight quarters as the leading cable news channel with total viewers, FNC also ranked number one in all of basic cable for the seventh consecutive quarter and won every single weekday hour with double and triple digit percent advantages. In total day, FNC garnered 1.4 million viewers, 227,000 with the A25-54 demographic and 140,000 with A18-49. In primetime, FNC delivered 2.4 million viewers, 377,000 in the 25-54 demo, and 231,000 with A18-49. For September, FNC claimed 13 of the top 14 cable news programs with total viewers, 14 of the top 15 in the 25-54 demo.
Notably, both CNN and MSNBC fell to new lows, both delivering their lowest-rated quarters in the 25-54 demo since 2014 and 2015, respectively. Meanwhile, FNC posted its largest percent advantage over CNN in the total day younger 25-54 demo since 2Q’14 and MSNBC since 1Q’15. Impressively, FNC is the only cable news network to show growth compared to last quarter, with double-digit percent advantages in both total viewers and the 25-54 demo. In total day, CNN marked a nearly 10 percent decline in total viewers (down 9 percent) and a nearly 20 percent decline in the 25-54 demo (down 19 percent). In primetime, CNN fell 10 percent in total viewers and marked a 16 percent loss in the 25-54 demo. Of all news networks, CNN is down the most year-to-date, shedding more than half of its audience with primetime demo. Meanwhile, MSNBC posted double-digit declines across the board in both categories, as FNC remains the top-rated cable news network with year-to-date in both total day and primetime total viewers and A25-54.
Several programs on CNN and MSNBC delivered historic lows in September, notching their lowest-rated programs since inception, including MSNBC’s 11th Hour with Brian Williams, which drew his lowest ratings with A25-54 ever, The Beat with Ari Melber which delivered its lowest ratings in both categories and The ReidOut along with Deadline: White House which both marked their lowest-rated 25-54 demos ever. CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time brought in its lowest-rated 25-54 demo since June 2019 and Outfront with Erin Burnett hit a low in the demo since July 2019. Meanwhile, several FNC programs posted their highest-rated month, such as America Reports, America’s Newsroom, The Faulkner Focus, The Five, FOX & Friends, FOX News Primetime, Gutfeld!, The Ingraham Angle, Outnumbered and Special Report with Bret Baier.
At 8 PM/ET, Tucker Carlson Tonight completed the quarter as the top-rated program in its timeslot in all categories, averaging 3.2 million viewers and 549,000 in the demo, as well as 340,000 in the 18-49 category. Hannity at 9 PM/ET followed suit, averaging 2.9 million viewers for the quarter, 478,000 in the demo and 291,000 among adults 18-49, surpassing both MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show and CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time in both categories. The Ingraham Angle at 10 PM/ET garnered 2.3 million viewers, 400,000 in the 25-54 demo and 240,000 in 18-49, edging out MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show across the board for the full quarter. Additionally, the network’s primetime programs dominated several entertainment and sports programs on broadcast in total viewers during the third quarter, including NBC’s 3rd Hour of TODAY.
Host Greg Gutfeld’s new late night program Gutfeld! finished the quarter as the second highest-rated in all of broadcast and cable, topping cable news in all categories at 11 PM/ET, notably surpassing every CNN program. The program, which is marking six months since its launch on October 5th, posted double-digit growth since last quarter in total viewers. Gutfeld! averaged 1.7 million viewers and 320,000 with A25-54 during the third quarter, outpacing ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! and NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon in total viewers in Live+SD. In Nielsen’s Live+3 measurement, Gutfeld! delivered wins against Jimmy Kimmel Live! and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon in total viewers. The show crushed Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, TBS’ Conan and Full Frontal with Samantha Bee across the board in total viewers and the younger 25-54 demo in both Live+SD and Live+3. Additionally, for the month of September, Gutfeld! once again outpaced Jimmy Kimmel Live for the fourth consecutive month. This quarter, Gutfeld! outpaced all late night programs on broadcast and cable television during the first full week post-Labor Day (September 6th-12th), in total viewers, including CBS’ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. This marked the second full week Gutfeld! held a larger audience than all broadcast late night programs with original telecasts in Live+SD and the fourth straight week FNC’s Gutfeld! was the most-watched host in all of late night television in total viewers.
Among FNC’s early and late evening programming, The Five dominated the quarter during the 5 PM/ET hour with 3 million viewers and 434,000 in the 25-54 demo and 270,000 in 18-49 demo, besting every CNN and MSNBC program across the board and ranking in the top three programs in all categories. Special Report with Bret Baier was number one in its timeslot (weeknights, 6 PM/ET) for the quarter, garnering 2.1 million viewers and 335,000 in the 25-54 demo and 217,000 in the 18-49 demo. At 7 PM/ET, FOX News Primetime, guest-hosted by various rotating hosts, averaged 1.9 million viewers, 319,000 in the 25-54 demo and 198,000 with 18-49 throughout the quarter. At 12 AM/ET, FOX News @ Night with Shannon Bream had an average audience of 934,000 million viewers and 204,000 in the 25-54 demo for the quarter.
From 4-6 AM/ET, FOX & Friends FIRST garnered 472,000 viewers. FNC’s signature morning show FOX & Friends (weekdays, 6-9 AM/ET) finished the quarter with 1.2 million viewers and 210,000 in the demo, easily outpacing CNN’s New Day and MSNBC’s Morning Joe across both categories. CNN’s sixth relaunch attempt of New Day, with newly-minted co-host Brianna Keilar, delivered its lowest-rated quarter since 2014 in total viewers, averaging less than 500,000 viewers (444,000 P2+; 90,000 A25-54) and marked double-digit losses across the board versus the first quarter of 2021. FNC’s FOX & Friends made its mark as the number one cable news program with both categories for the sixth consecutive month.
FNC’s daytime lineup, kicking off with two-hour morning news program America’s Newsroom with Bill Hemmer and Dana Perino (weekdays, 9-11 AM/ET), saw 1.5 million viewers and 250,000 in the 25-54 demo. The Faulkner Focus at 11 AM/ET, anchored by Harris Faulkner, notched 1.5 million viewers and 244,000 in the 25-54 demo and bested CNN and MSNBC across the board. At 12 PM/ET, Outnumbered earned 1.6 million viewers and 260,000 in the demo. From 1-3 PM/ET, America Reports with John Roberts and Sandra Smith garnered 1.5 million viewers and 252,000 in the 25-54 demo. At 3 PM/ET, anchor Martha MacCallum’s The Story averaged 1.5 million viewers and 252,000 in the 25-54 demo, while Your World with Neil Cavuto at 4 PM/ET nabbed 1.5 million viewers and 255,000 in the 25-54 category for the quarter. Notably for the month of September, FNC’s The Faulkner Focus, Outnumbered, America’s Newsroom, The Story and America Reports all topped NBC’s 3rd Hour of TODAY and TODAY with Hoda & Jenna.
On the weekends, FNC’s powerhouse lineup earned the top 17 highest-rated programs in total viewers and swept the top 16 programs in the 25-54 demo, winning in total day and primetime combined in total viewers. FNC’s addition to the Saturday primetime lineup, Unfiltered with Dan Bongino (Saturdays at 10 PM/ET), crushed its cable news competitors, besting CNN and MSNBC combined in total viewers. The program delivered 1.5 million viewers and 210,000 with A25-54. Watters’ World (Saturdays at 8 PM/ET) earned the number one program in total viewers, with 1,729,000 and 226,000 in the demo. Justice with Judge Jeanine (Saturdays at 9 PM/ET) followed as the next most-watched, also with 1,697,000 viewers and 200,000 in the demo. CAVUTO Live airing on Saturday mornings (10 AM-12 PM/ET) earned 1.3 million viewers and 205,000 with A25-54.
On Sundays, FNC’s Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo (Sundays at 10 AM/ET) earned the top-rated spot in the coveted 25-54 category during the third quarter, with 1.7 million viewers and 247,000 in the demo. MediaBuzz, hosted by Howard Kurtz at 11 AM/ET, delivered 1.4 million viewers and 222,000 in the 25-54 demo, outpacing CNN’s Reliable Sources across the board for the quarter. Notably, the CNN program averaged only 849,000 viewers and 148,000 with A25-54, down 39 percent and 51 percent respectively versus the first quarter. In September, Reliable Sources plummeted to its lowest-rated month of the year, shedding over half its audience in both categories since the start of 2021. FNC’s newest program on Sunday evenings, Sunday Night in America with Trey Gowdy (Sundays at 7 PM/ET), demolished every CNN and MSNBC program in total viewers during its second quarter since it launched in June, drawing an audience of 1.6 million viewers and 201,000 in the 25-54 demo. At 8 PM/ET, Life Liberty and Levin earned 1.7 million viewers and 205,000 in the demo, while The Next Revolution with host Steve Hilton (Sundays at 9 PM/ET) secured 1.5 million viewers and 197,000 in the demo. FOX & Friends Weekend (weekends from 6-10 AM/ET) dominated CNN and MSNBC every hour in total viewers and the 25-54 demo during the quarter, with 1.2 million viewers and 195,000 in the demo. Additionally, FOX Report with Jon Scott (1.2 million viewers; 183,000 A25-54) surpassed the cable news competition in its timeslot.
THIRD QUARTER 2021 RATINGS FOR THE TOP FIVE PROGRAMS IN CABLE NEWS:
Total Viewers: Tucker Carlson Tonight (3,242,000), The Five (2,976,000), Hannity (2,936,000), The Ingraham Angle (2,348,000) The Rachel Maddow Show (2,204,000)
Adults 25-54: Tucker Carlson Tonight (549,000), Hannity (478,000), The Five (434,000), The Ingraham Angle (400,000), Special Report with Bret Baier (335,000)
3Q’21 VS. 3Q’20 NIELSEN NUMBERS (seven day week, L+SD):
FNC: 1,358,000 total viewers – down 22% (227,000 in 25-54 – down 25%)
CNN: 598,000 total viewers – down 38% (130,000 in 25-54 – down 46%)
MSNBC: 738,000 total viewers – down 39% (94,000 in 25-54 – down 48%)
FNC: 2,372,000 total viewers – down 32% (377,000 in 25-54 – down 37%)
CNN: 822,000 total viewers – down 46% (188,000 in 25-54 – down 52%)
MSNBC: 1,267,000 total viewers – down 40% (161,000 in 25-54 – down 51%)
SEPTEMBER 2021 RATINGS FOR THE TOP FIVE PROGRAMS IN CABLE NEWS:
Total Viewers: Tucker Carlson Tonight (3,369,000), The Five (3,247,000), Hannity (3,045,000), The Ingraham Angle (2,507,000) Special Report with Bret Baier (2,370,000)
Adults 25-54: Tucker Carlson Tonight (574,000), Hannity (494,000), The Five (473,000), The Ingraham Angle (429,000), Special Report with Bret Baier (369,000)
SEPTEMBER 2021 VS. SEPTEMBER 2020 NIELSEN NUMBERS (seven day week, L+SD):
FNC: 1,462,000 total viewers – down 20% (240,000 in 25-54 – down 24%)
CNN: 576,000 total viewers – down 36% (127,000 in 25-54 – down 38%)
MSNBC: 716,000 total viewers – down 39% (83,000 in 25-54 – down 52%)
FNC: 2,494,000 total viewers – down 31% (400,000 in 25-54 – down 35%)
CNN: 791,000 total viewers – down 41% (183,000 in 25-54 – down 41%)
MSNBC: 1,271,000 total viewers – down 38% (152,000 in 25-54 – down 51%)
FOX News Channel (FNC) is a 24-hour all-encompassing news service delivering breaking news as well as political and business news. The number one network in cable, FNC has been the most watched television news channel for more than 19 consecutive years. According to a 2021 Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index report, FOX News leads the news industry in both brand loyalty, engagement and expectations. A 2019 Suffolk University poll also named FOX News as the most trusted source for television news or commentary, while a 2019 Brand Keys Emotion Engagement Analysis survey found that FOX News was the most trusted cable news brand. Owned by FOX Corp, FNC is available in 80 million homes and dominates the cable news landscape, routinely notching the top ten programs in the genre.
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