NBC Leads In Prime Time, Fox Makes Big Gains

NBC has a commanding lead in key advertiser viewer measures so far this season, thanks to strong results from Sunday and Thursday NFL programming. But it is still down versus a year ago.

NBC is earning a Nielsen average 3.5 million 18-49 viewers in prime time -- a 2.7 rating/9 share --- when looking at season-to-date live program ratings plus seven days of time-shifted viewing, except for the most recent two weeks, through December 11. This is down from its 3.6 million number (2.9/9) through the same period a year ago.

Fox is in second place at 2.9 million 18-49 viewers with a 2.2/8 -- which the only network up so far this year, from 2.7 million (2.1/7) in 2015, much of this coming from this season’s high ratings of a seven-game World Series. 

CBS comes next with 2.6 million 18-49 viewers, at a 2.0/7. It is down from its 3.1 million level a year ago (2.4/8), as last year it had more “Thursday Night Football” games. ABC is at 2.3 million 18-49 viewers with a 1.8/6 -- off from its 2.7 million (2.1/7) result a year ago.



The next group of broadcast networks is led by the CW with 900,000 viewers in the 18-49 demographic for a 0.7/2 -- down from 990,000 (0.8/3). Telemundo is at 870,000, a 0.7/2 (up from 750,000 and a 0.6/2), followed by Univision with 830,000 and a 0.6/2 (down 1.03 million 0.8/3); and ION with 370,000 and a 0.3/1 -- the same versus a year ago.

This year, CBS continues to hold down overall total average viewers in prime time at 10.3 million viewers, followed by NBC with 9.7 million, ABC with 7.1 million, and Fox at 7.0 million.  Among other broadcast networks, The CW is at 1.93 million, Univision, 1.83 million; Telemundo, 1.73; and ION, 1.2 million.

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