Super Bowl Draws 46% Women, Expands Demo Reach

Superbowl-XLVI-AThe Super Bowl brings all types of viewers to its annual Sunday party -- but increasingly, this big TV event is more wealthy, female, and diverse. Last year's game pulled in 30% of viewers with a household income of $100,000 or more -- that's double the number almost a decade before in the 2002 game, per Nielsen Company.

Nielsen also says more Hispanic-Americans and African-Americans are watching the game -- up two percentage points each to 9% and 11%, respectively. in 2011.

There are also more women viewers -- although men still make up the majority. Women moved up 3 percentage points to 46%, with men at 54%. Last year, 51 million viewers to the Super Bowl were female. By comparison, the Oscars last year averaged 37.9 million total viewers.

Compared to many other TV shows, the Super Bowl has gained in total audience since 2002 -- when the game recorded 87 million viewers -- and 90.7 million in 2006. Last year's game grew in audience to a record 111.5 million -- the highest single TV event in U.S. history. This came after the record results for the  2007 Super Bowl, which featured the New York Giants' thrilling victory over the New England Patriots. The two teams are playing again in this Sunday's game.

A quarter of the Super Bowl's audience is comprised of 35- to-49-year-olds -- the biggest age group. This is down from a 28% share five years ago. Twenty-three percent are 18 to 34, while 22% are 50 to 60 years of age, 16% are ages 2 to 11, and 15% are age 65 and older.

The Super Bowl audience is getting slightly older, but its median age is still in the low 40s. Last year's game posted a 42.5 median age.

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