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Evening News Ratings

Barbara Walters Comes Out of Retirement to Toast Diane Sawyer

Barbara Walters dropped by her building this afternoon to make sure the rent was still being paid. Actually, she stopped by ABC News HQ to toast her friend and colleague Diane Sawyer and her “World News” team for finishing May sweeps No. 1 in the A25-54 demo. It’s the first win for “World News” in the younger demo in more than 6 years.

ABC News President James Goldston, who assembled the gathering, congratulated Sawyer as the first female evening news anchor to win a sweeps month and called the win a proud moment for Sawyer, show EP Michael Corn and everyone in the news division.

Sawyer then made some remarks, thanking Goldston and his predecessor Disney ABC TV group president Ben Sherwood, her team and all of ABC News for their dedication and hard work. She joked that she doesn’t follow the ratings closely, but that she can always tell how the show did by the look on Corn’s face every Tuesday morning when the ratings come in. After remarks from Corn, Walters appeared from the audience, and joked that she came out of retirement for the celebration. Walters was of co-anchor of “ABC Evening News” from 1976-1978.

Evening News Ratings: Week of May 19 & May Sweeps

EveningNewsNewABC’s “World News with Diane Sawyer” has won its first May sweep in the younger demo in 7 years. It’s the first victory in any sweeps month in more than 6 years for “World News” — since February 2008.

ABC topped “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” by +42,000 A25-54 viewers. Williams’s broadcast, meanwhile, won the month in total viewers with its biggest May sweep audience and widest lead over “World News” in three years.

All three broadcasts were up among total viewers with NBC and ABC up +6% and CBS up +5%. But “World News” was the only broadcast to show demo viewer growth compared to May 2013. Sawyer’s show was up +9%, while “Nightly” was down -6% and the “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” was down -2%. In fact, this is the lowest May sweep since at least 1991 (when the keeping of electronic records began), for both NBC and CBS in the A25-54 demo.

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For the week of May 19, “World News” wins in the demo with a +106,000 viewer lead on “Nightly News,” while “Nightly” takes total viewers with a +467,000 viewer lead on “World News.” All three newscasts were down in viewers and the demo compared to the same week last year, which saw extended coverage of that deadly tornado in Moore, OK.

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Evening News Ratings: Week of May 12

EveningNewsNewOnce again, ABC’s “World News with Diane Sawyer” wins the week among younger viewers. Sawyer’s newscast has now won four of the last six weeks in the A25-54 demo, topping “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” for the weeks of April 7, 14, and 28, and now May 12. The gap averaged +83,000 viewers (+4%), but was as wide as +204,000 on Monday and as little as +14,000 viewers on Friday.

“Nightly” still topped “World News” by +830,000 total viewers (+11%), and averaged +1,908,000 (+29%) more viewers than “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley.” “Nightly” has won 244 weeks straight in viewers.

All three broadcasts were up big compared to the same week last year. “World News” saw the biggest jump in both viewers (+14%) and the A25-45 demo (+24%). “Evening News” was up +13% in viewers and up +8% in the demo while “Nightly News” was up +12% in viewers and up +4% in the demo.

Numbers for the week of May 12, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 8,423,000 7,593,000 6,515,000
• A25-54: 1,987,000 2,070,000 1,648,000

Evening News Ratings: Week of May 5

EveningNewsNewThe back and forth among younger viewers for their preference in an evening newscast goes back to “Nightly News with Brian Williams.” The NBC newscast topped ABC’s “World News with Diane Sawyer” by +18,000 A25-54 viewers last week. Sawyer had won the younger demo two of the previous three weeks.

Only “Nightly News” showed growth in viewers compared to the same week last year, up less than 1%. “World News” and the “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” were each down -2%. Among younger viewers “Nightly” lost -14% of its audience, while “Evening News” was down -9% and “World News” was down the least, -3% year-over-year.

Season-to-date, “Nightly” is posting its biggest total viewer audience (9.308 million) since the 2005-06 season. Meanwhile, “World News” is seeing its closest A25-54 demo performance with “Nightly” since the 2007-08 season.

Numbers for the week of May 5, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 8,231,000 7,354,000 6,258,000
• A25-54: 1,901,000 1,883,000 1,470,000

Evening News Ratings: Week of April 28

EveningNewsNewFor the third time in four weeks “World News with Diane Sawyer” takes the younger viewer demo. Sawyer edged “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” by just 8,000 viewers in the A25-54 demo. “Nightly” was No. 1 in total viewers — for the 242nd straight week — with a +932,000 lead over the ABC broadcast.

“Nightly” was also up the most in total viewers compared to the same week last year, +14%, while “World News” was up the most in the demo: +20%. “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley,” which will get a new executive producer in Steve Capus in a few weeks, was also up year-over-year: up +12% in viewers and up +10% in the demo.

Numbers for the week of April 28, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 9,026,000 8,094,000 6,991,000
• A25-54: 2,136,000 2,144,000 1,727,000

Evening News Ratings: Week of April 21

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NBC “Nightly News with Brian Williams” was back on top in both total viewers and the A25-54 demographic for the week of April 21.

Williams’ broadcast led ABC “World News with Diane Sawyer” by +647,000 total viewers and +38,000 demo viewers. Sawyer’s broadcast, in turn, led CBS “Evening News with Scott Pelley” by +1,321,000 total viewers and +429,000 demo viewers.

Compared to the same week last year, NBC and ABC were flat in total viewers and CBS was down-3%. In the A25-54 demographic, NBC was down -10%, CBS was down -12% and ABC was up +3%.

Numbers for the week of April 21, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 8,249,000 7,602,000 6,281,000
• A25-54: 1,970,000 1,932,000 1,503,000

 

Evening News Ratings: Week of April 14

EveningNewsNewFor the second week in a row, ABC’s “World News with Diane Sawyer” has grabbed first place in the A25-45 news demo. It’s been more than six years since the ABC broadcast has had back-to-back demo wins: the weeks of March 17 and March 24, 2008 when Charles Gibson was anchor. Sawyer took over the show in January,  2010.

While “World News” edged “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” by 12,000 demo viewers during the week of April 7, last week the margin was 85,000 viewers. “Nightly News” continues to lead in total viewers for the 240th consecutive week with a +647,000 viewer lead on “World News.”

All three newscasts saw year-over-year drops. That’s because during the same week last year all three extensively covered the Boston marathon bombings and aftermath. While NBC and “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” were down double digits, “World News:” was down the least: -7% in viewers and down -10% in the demo.

Numbers for the week of April 14, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 8,571,000 7,924,000 6,274,000
• A25-54: 2,008,000 2,093,000 1,498,000


Evening News Ratings: Week of April 7

EveningNewsNew“World News with Diane Sawyer” had a rare win in the A25-54 demo last week. “World News” topped NBC “Nightly News with Brian Williams” by 12,000 viewers, or less than 1%. The last time that happened was the week of July 22, 2013. Sawyer and Williams were anchoring all five days last week.

It’s not that “World News” saw a big jump over last year, in fact the program was only up +1% in the ad-friendly demo, but “Nightly” saw a big drop: down -18% year-over-year. “World News” has been getting closer to “Nightly” in the demo in recent weeks. As for programming, “World News” had a mix of breaking news — the Pennsylvania school stabbing and California college bus crash — as well as international news, including ABC’s Terry Moran reporting from the Central African Republic. Sawyer also lightened the mix with her interview with the cast of “Mad Men.”

Both programs actually lost total viewers. “Nightly” was down -2%, while “World News” was down -1% compared to the same week last year. Meanwhile, the “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” was the only broadcast up in total viewers, year over year: +2%. But “Evening News” shed -10% in the demo.

Numbers for the week of April 7, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 8,175,000 7,378,000 6,366,000
• A25-54: 1,870,000 1,882,000 1,495,000


Evening News Ratings: Week of March 31

EveningNewsNewThe “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” showed the most year-over-year growth in viewers last week: +7% over the same week last year. But “Evening News” also lost -7% in the A25-54 demo.

“NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” was once again the most-watched newscast in both measurements, but also experienced a split vs. last year. “Nightly” was up +3% in viewers, but down -4% in the demo.

“ABC World News with Diane Sawyer,” which trailed “Nightly” by 899,000 viewers, saw growth in both measurements: +4% in viewers and the demo. And for the third time in the four weeks, “World News” came in first on Friday in the demo by 10,000 viewers, which is less than 1%.

Numbers for the week of March 31, 2014:

NBC ABC CBS
• Total Viewers: 8,625,000 7,726,000 6,847,000
• A25-54: 2,137,000 1,964,000 1,592,000

Evening News Ratings: Week of March 24 and Q1 2014

EveningNewsNew“NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” wins the week and the just-completed first quarter of 2014.

Compared to the same week last year all three newscasts saw significant growth. “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” was up the most in viewers: +19%, also up +14% in the demo. “Nightly News” was also up +14% in the demo and up +15% in viewers. “ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” was up +8% in viewers and up +13% in the demo.

For the second straight week, “Nightly” topped “World News” by over 1 million viewers, meanwhile, “Evening News” closed the viewer deficit with “World News” by more than half a million viewers, compared to the same week last year. And with Sawyer’s interview with Gov. Chris Christie, “World News” was No. 1 in the demo Thursday, leading “Nightly” by +47,000 viewers.

Due to live coverage of NCAA basketball, CBS’s ratings are based on a three-day average (Mon-Wed). ABC and NBC are based on five days.

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For the first quarter of 2014, with a boost from the Sochi Olympics, “Nightly News” saw the most total viewer growth: up +12% vs. Q1 2013. “World News” had the most demo viewer growth, up +10%. “Nightly” was also up in the demo +6% while “World News” was up the same amount in viewers. “World News” had its best performance in total viewers in six years and in the A25-54 Demo in three years in the quarter. “Evening News” was up +9% in viewers vs. Q1 2013 and flat in the demo.

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