Cable news networks saw an overall pullback in viewing in May, partly due to NBA playoff viewing.
Fox News Channel still leads all cable news networks.
While prime time grew 6% to 2.38 million viewers and 2% among key 25-54 viewers to 461,000, it slipped in total day (6 a.m. to 6 a.m.) viewing. It was down 2% in total viewers to 1.4 million and 8% lower in 25-54 at 279,000.
Fox News Channel came in at second place overall to TNT -- which had heavy NBA playoff programming.
After almost a year of nonstop growth, second-place cable news network MSNBC lost some ground. In prime time, the network was down 2% to 1.65 million viewers and 21% lower in 25-54 viewers to 329,000. Total day viewing went south: 1% to 914,000 and 11% lower among 25-54 viewers to 196,000.
Still, MSNBC says it had growth in the 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. period, while Fox News and CNN declined. For May, among total viewers, MSNBC was up 4%, with Fox News down 9% and CNN losing 21%.
MSNBC finished in fourth place overall behind first-place TNT, Fox News (second place) and ESPN -- which, like TNT, benefited from strong NBA playoff programming.
CNN was in eighth place overall for May. It was down 25% in total prime-time viewers to 835,000 and 34% lower in the prime time 25-54 demo to 265,000, but lost 20% in total day viewers to 655,000 and another 28% in the total day 25-54 viewers, to 198,000.