Fox News dominates May as 14 shows overtake CNN’s most popular show

Fox News Channel continued to thrive in May, sweeping cable news competitors in total daytime and prime-time viewers, while the liberal CNN lost a significant chunk of his audience after a brief spike post-election.

Fox News averaged 2.2 million prime-time viewers to end as the only basic cable channel to average over two million viewers from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. ET. MSNBC finished second with an average of 1.5 million and TNT, ESPN and HGTV rounded out the top five while CNN failed to reach the million viewers.

CNN has averaged just 913,000 prime-time viewers as struggling programming from Anderson Cooper, Chris Cuomo and Don Lemon saw two-thirds of its January programming turn away.

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Fox News also dominated the total audience for the day, averaging 1.2 million viewers, while MSNBC No.2 settled for just 835,000. HGTV, CNN and ESPN joined FNC and MSNBC among the five most viewed networks in the category. As a result, FNC remains the most-watched cable news channel to date in terms of both daytime and prime-time viewers, and CNN’s total viewership has fallen nearly 70% since January.

“Tucker Carlson Tonight” again finished as the most-watched show on cable news, averaging 2.9 million viewers.

As prime-time CNN viewers wane, “Tucker Carlson Tonight” once again finished as the most-watched cable news show, averaging 2.9 million viewers. “Hannity” averaged 2.6 million viewers to finish second, and Fox News’s “The Five” averaged a bit below to finish third despite airing in the historically less watched 5 p.m. ET time slot.

MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show” averaged 2.5 million viewers for fourth, followed by FNC’s “The Ingraham Angle” and “Special Report with Bret Baier.”

The most-watched program on CNN struggling was the “Cuomo Prime Time” scandal, which averaged one million viewers to finish No. 22 overall in cable news. CNN’s most popular show ended behind 14 different Fox News offerings and seven MSNBC programs.

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“Tucker” also finished at the top of the key adult demographic group of 25 to 54 years old, with an average of 478,000 viewers of the coveted group by advertisers. “Hannity”, “The Five”, “Ingraham” and “Maddow” joined Carlson in the top five and “Gutfeld!” continued to thrive as the late night program finished sixth.

Ingraham’s victory over Maddow made her the most-watched woman on cable news among the key May demo. The success of Fox News’ most popular programs with young viewers helped the network dominate MSNBC and CNN in the key demo. FNC averaged 203,000 demo viewers throughout the day, compared to just 147,000 for CNN and 108,000 for MSNBC.

Fox News averaged 345,000 prime-time demo viewers, compared to CNN’s 218,000. While CNN struggled across the board in May, the Liberal Network managed to beat MSNBC in both demo categories, as MSNBC was content with just 199,000 prime-time viewers aged 25 to 54.

“FOX News Primetime” didn’t need a permanent host to win the 7 p.m. ET hours, as it averaged 1.6 million viewers and 274,000 in the demo to beat “Erin Burnett OutFront” from CNN and MSNBC’s “The ReidOut”. In fact, Joy Reid’s show ended with the lowest-rated month on the program in both categories since its launch.

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“Fox & Friends” was the most-watched cable morning show in both categories, crushing CNN’s “New Day” and MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” across the board. “New Day” had its least-viewed month of the year in both total viewers and the demo, while “Morning Joe” had its lowest-rated month in the demo since 2015.

“America’s Newsroom with Bill Hemmer and Dana Perino”, “The Faulkner Focus”, “Outnumbered”, “America Reports with John Roberts and Sandra Smith”, “The Story” by Martha MacCallum, “Your World with Neil Cavuto”, “Watters Other programs included “World”, “Justice with Judge Jeanine”, “Cavuto Live”, “Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo”, “Life Liberty and Levin”, “The Next Revolution with Steve Hilton” and “MediaBuzz” bestselling Fox News. which flourished in May.

All data courtesy of Nielsen Media Research.


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Javier E. Swan

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