FNC Notches 2021’s Largest Viewership Share in Cable News with Most Politically-Diverse Audience
The Five Makes History in 4Q’21 as the First Non-Primetime Program to Rank Number One in Total Viewership
Tucker Carlson Tonight Tops Cable News For Entire Year in Total Viewers, A25-54 and A18-49
Hannity is Second Most-Watched in Cable News in 25-54 Demo; Laura Ingraham’s The Ingraham Angle is Most-Watched Female in Cable News for Second Year in a Row with A25-54
FNC’s Late Night Program Gutfeld! Dismantles Late Night Hierarchy, Finishes Year as Second Most-Watched Late Night Host in all of Television
FNC’s New Daytime Lineup Posts Double-Digit Increases as Recently-Launched Programs Dominate Respective Timeslots
NEW YORK – December 29, 2021 – FOX News Channel (FNC) capped off its 25th anniversary year by dominating all of basic cable in total day and primetime viewership for the sixth consecutive year, according to Nielsen Media Research. In primetime, FNC averaged 2,348,000 total viewers, 370,000 in the 25-54 demo and 231,000 in the 18-49 demo. In total day, the network delivered 1,327,000 total viewers, 222,000 in the 25-54 demo and 135,000 in the 18-49 demo. FNC obliterated CNN and MSNBC across the board, and was the only cable network to deliver more than 2 million total viewers in primetime and one million total viewers in total day. Additionally, according to data from Nielsen/MRI Fusion, more independents and democrats tuned into FNC than CNN this year while delivering the largest independent audience in cable news, making FNC’s audience the most politically diverse in cable news. Notably in 4Q’21, FNC had its second highest share of the cable news audience in its entire 25 year history with total day in the 25-54 and 18-49 demo. FNC also drew 57% of the total day audience in both the 25-54 and 18-49 demos, behind only 4th Quarter 2004.
In commenting on the 2021 ratings, FOX News Media CEO Suzanne Scott said, “As we embark on our 20th year as the leader in cable news, the last six of which as number one in all of cable, I am incredibly proud of the unrivaled success we’ve had at FOX News Channel. Not only were we the only network to grow our audience share, but we did so while changing our lineup and transforming the entire late-night television landscape in the process, ensuring our continued momentum for many years to come.”
FNC completed the fourth quarter of 2021 as the most-watched cable news network, sweeping the competition in total day and primetime total viewers and in the 25-54 demo, according to Nielsen Media Research. Notably, The Five continued to smash records and made history as the first non-prime program to rank number one in total viewers in all of cable news for an entire quarter. The program delivered a whopping 3,296,000 in total viewers, outpacing every hour across cable news. In the 25-54 demo, The Five notched 481,000 viewers, coming second behind only FNC’s Tucker Carlson Tonight’s 542,000. Aside from marking 80 consecutive quarters and number one in primetime total viewers, FNC delivered its highest-rated quarter of the year with total day while both CNN and MSNBC notched its lowest. In total day, FNC garnered 1.4 million total viewers, 236,000 in the 25-54 demo and 152,000 in the 18-49 demo. In primetime, FNC delivered 2.4 million total viewers, 366,000 in the 25-54 demo, and 233,000 in the 18-49 demo.
Tucker Carlson Tonight finished 2021 as the highest-rated program in cable news, averaging 3,214,000 total viewers, 535,000 in the 25-54 demo and 338,000 in the 18-49 demo. At 5PM/ET, FNC’s late afternoon program The Five topped all daytime and primetime programming on CNN and MSNBC, delivering the second largest audience in cable news in total viewers with 2,936,000 and 423,000 in the 25-54 demo, making it the only non-primetime show to rank in the top five, notching its second highest ranking in program history. In the 25-54 demo, Hannity at 9PM/ET was the second highest-rated cable news program with 460,000 and saw 2,870,000 in total viewers. At 10PM/ET, Laura Ingraham finished the second year in a row as the most-watched female in cable news in the 25-54 demo, delivering 389,000 and 2,266,000 total viewers as host of The Ingraham Angle.
FNC programs comprised 10 of the top 15 programs in cable news, including Tucker Carlson Tonight, The Five, Hannity, The Ingraham Angle, Special Report with Bret Baier, FOX News Primetime, Gutfeld!, Outnumbered, America’s Newsroom and The Faulkner Focus. The network also notched nine of the top 15 programs in the 25-54 demo, including Tucker Carlson Tonight, Hannity, The Five, The Ingraham Angle, Special Report with Bret Baier, Gutfeld!, FOX News Primetime, Outnumbered and America’s Newsroom.
This year, FNC also launched a late-night program Gutfeld!, hosted by Greg Gutfeld, and promptly became the home of the second highest-rated show in late night television (1,701,000 total viewers and 325,000 in the 25-54 demo), topping ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!, NBC’s The Tonight Show, Comedy Central’s The Daily Show and TBS’ Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, among other broadcast and cable programs. Gutfeld! was also the first late night television host to unseat CBS’ Stephen Colbert as the most-watched late night television host for a full week since 2018, finishing several weeks in 2021 with the largest audience in all of late night television. Following Gutfeld! at 12AM/ET, FOX News @ Night with Shannon Bream, which debuted in its new timeslot earlier this year, improved the timeslot’s ratings across the board.
FNC’s signature morning franchise FOX & Friends First delivered 470,000 total viewers and 95,000 in the 25-54 demo while FOX & Friends continued to rank as the highest-rated morning program on cable, averaging 1.2 million total viewers and 211,000 in the 25-54 demo.
Additionally, the network’s newly-launched daytime lineup which debuted on January 18 posted double-digit gains versus December 2020 in total viewers (+12%) and the 25-54 demo (+27%) from 9AM-4PM/ET.
Beginning with America’s Newsroom co-anchors Bill Hemmer and Dana Perino averaged 1.5 million total viewers and 248,000 in the 25-54 demo while Harris Faulkner’s The Faulkner Focus delivered 1,476,000 total viewers and 237,000 in the 25-54 demo. FNC’s Outnumbered with co-hosts Harris Faulkner, Emily Compagno and Kayleigh McEnany had an audience of 1.58 million total viewers and 250,000 in the 25-54 demo. America Reports with John Roberts and Sandra Smith garnered 1.4 million total viewers and 236,000 in the 25-54 demo while The Story with Martha MacCallum delivered 1.4 million total viewers and 240,000 in the 25-54 demo. Your World with Neil Cavuto averaged 1.42 million total viewers and 236,000 in the 25-54 demo.
Special Report with Bret Baier nabbed 2.1 million total viewers and 332,000 in the 25-54 demo while FOX News Primetime secured 1.87 million total viewers and 307,000 in the 25-54 demo.
FNC’s weekend programming continued to exert its ratings strength, beginning with FOX & Friends Weekend topping CNN and MSNBC across the board with 1.2 million total viewers and 197,000 in the 25-54 demo. Cavuto Live crushed the competition on Saturday mornings, averaging 1.2 million total viewers and 196,000 in the 25-54 demo. At 6PM/ET on Saturdays, FOX Report with Jon Scott delivered 1 million total viewers and 140,000 in the 25-54 demo. FNC’s new twin programs The Big Saturday Show garnered an audience of 931,000 total viewers and 140,000 in the 25-54 demo while The Big Sunday Show at 5PM/ET was the highest-rated program in its hour, delivering 986,000 in total viewers and 149,000 in the 25-54 demo.
During primetime on Saturdays, FNC again dominated the competition, beginning with Watters’ World (1,838,000 total viewers and 224,000 in the 25-54 demo), the weekend’s highest-rated program in total viewers, Justice with Judge Jeanine (1,801,000 total viewers and 209,000 in the 25-54 demo) and the newly launched Unfiltered with Dan Bongino (1,531,000 total viewers and 216,000 in the 25-54 demo).
Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo was the highest-rated program of the weekend this year in the 25-54 demo, averaging 1.66 million total viewers and 249,000 in the 25-54 demo. MediaBuzz with Howard Kurtz notched 1.3 million total viewers and 209,000 in the 25-54 demo, crushing CNN’s Reliable Sources across the board which lost 57% of its audience in total viewers and 72% in the 25-54 demo over the course of the year.
FNC’s recently-launched Sunday Night in America with Trey Gowdy topped the competition with 1.4 million total viewers and 166,000 in the 25-54 demo while Life, Liberty & Levin notched Sunday’s largest audience in total viewers with 1.6 million total viewers and 195,000 in the 25-54 demo. The Next Revolution with Steve Hilton won its timeslot with total viewers, delivering 1.3 million total viewers and 173,000 in the 25-54 demo.
Nielsen Cable News Ratings for 2021 (12/28/20-12/26/21) vs. 2020 (12/30/19-12/27/20)
FNC: 2,348,000 P2+ (down 34%); 370,000 25-54 (down 42%)
CNN: 1,078,000 P2+ (down 40%); 268,000 25-54 (down 48%)
MSNBC: 1,533,000 P2+ (down 28%); 216,000 25-54 (down 39%)
FNC: 1,327,000 P2+ (down 29%); 222,000 25-54 (down 35%)
CNN: 773,000 P2+ (down 32%); 185,000 25-54 (down 40%)
MSNBC: 905,000 P2+ (down 27%); 125,000 25-54 (down 38%)
About FOX News Channel
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 basic cable, FNC has been the most watched television news channel for nearly 20 consecutive years. According to Nielsen Media Research, FNC currently attracts more than 50% of the cable news viewing audience. Notably, a 2021 Nielsen/MRI Fusion report showed the network garners the largest independent audience in cable news, while FNC’s primetime hours deliver the second largest liberal audience in cable news. Additionally, a 2021 Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index report stated FOX News leads the news industry in both brand loyalty, engagement and expectations. Owned by FOX Corp, FNC is available in 80 million homes and dominates the cable news landscape, routinely notching the top 10 programs in the genre.
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