Fox News Remains Ratings Champ As 2013 Comes to Close

Greta Van Susteren, Bill O'Reilly, Megyn

It and rivals CNN, MSNBC down from last year

Fox News Channel maintained its grip on the cable-news network ratings prize in 2013, drawing more viewers than the combined averages of CNN, MSNBC and HLN.

It was a down year in terms of overall audience, as every newsie but HLN showed primetime declines from their Presidential Election-driven tallies of 2012.

According to Nielsen data through Dec. 8, Fox News Channel averaged 1.774 million viewers in primetime (down 13% from 2012) and 297,000 adults 25-54 (down 30%). It was followed by MSNBC with 645,000 viewers and 203,000 adults 25-54 (down 29% in both); CNN with 578,000 (down 15%) and 187,000 adults 25-54 (down 16%); and HLN with 403,000 total viewer (up 21%) and 142,000 in the demo (up 27%).

Among all basic cable networks in 2013, FNC ranked sixth in primetime while MSNBC was 29th and CNN was 31st. In total day, Fox ran fourth while CNN was 28th and MSNBC ran 30th; in 2012, CNN finished behind MSNBC. CNN and HLN showed some year-over-year gains on a total-day basis, while FNC and MSNBC were down.

Fox and CNN both made some significant changes to their lineup in 2013, with FNC’s revamped primetime lineup, introduced on Oct. 7, posting gains in both total viewers and adults 25-54 vs. the block’s 2013 season-to-date average. The newest program, “The Kelly File” with Megyn Kelly, has improved the 9 p.m. hour by 23% in total viewers and 13% in adults 25-54, and “The O’Reilly Factor” is the top show in cable news (2.78 million, 439,000 adults 25-54).

Also of note outside of primetime, “The Five” (5-6 p.m. ET) and “Red Eye” (3-4 a.m. ET) had their most-watched years to date.

Best news for CNN, which is on pace for its least-watched year on record in primetime, was that it was able to hold steady or rise a bit in various total-day categories, like afternoon show “The Lead With Jake Tapper,” which is second among the cable news nets in its timeslot. Morning show “News Day” is up a bit vs. last year in total viewers but is averaging less than 300,000 daily and is down vs. what the net was drawing in the time period earlier this year.

Elsewhere at CNN, the reboot of “Crossfire” has struggled, averaging 400,000 viewers, but the net made some noise — especially in the 25-54 demo — with some of its CNN Films specials.

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  1. FOX news is by no means the sole arbiter of truth and they certainly do their share of censoring & selective reporting, but they’re the least offensive controlled media source out there, in my opinion. Plus their female news anchors and contributors are pleasant on the eyes.

  2. Packard Day says:

    Of all types of revenge, professional and financial success are truly the greatest. They almost validate the soul.

  3. Biff Henderson says:

    Fox news median age is 65 LOLOL 65!!!!! Congrats fox news our grandparents love you. BTW Cnn dwarfs fox news online

    • Rich says:

      Approximately 70% of the viewership of the “network news” – NMB/CBS/ABC – are in the demographic age range that is older than the “25-54” demo, too.

      I guess your point is….more older people watch news programs than younger ones. It makes sense when you think about it – look who the “younger” demographic elected president….not once, but TWICE!!! President Barack “fail upwards” Obama!

    • Rich says:

      Please explain why this very article says that Fox viewer share is greater than the others for the demographic under the age that you specified??

    • SanityPrevails says:

      So, you’re saying that people with the most life experience, knowledge and wisdom prefer Fox? Or are you saying that the clueless, young and naive prefer CNN? Either way, I don’t get your point.

      • Bart Frechem says:

        My point is that people in this country realize something is seriously wrong with the direction in which we are headed.   They realize that the vast majority of news outlets are giving them one-dimensional ideology.   They realize that our government and most news outlets do not reflect their core principles and the principles this country was founded on.   They don’t like what’s happening, they don’t like the values being pushed, and they don’t like the deceit and  divisiveness offered by other news outlets.  They realize that the liberal vision of America has neither facts nor history on its side.   Socialism and  wealth re-distribution and big government have NOT succeeded anywhere, at anytime.  They watch  FOX because they have greater faith in the news being reported correctly and they like the message of hope and  patriotism.

        You probably feel differently…for your own reasons.   The greatness of this country is that you are allowed to feel and say what you think.   It is interesting that you seem supportive of a government that wants to erode much of that freedom and privacy.    But…to each his own.  For me, I will trust in God and in a country founded on faith and the goodness of the people.    “Peace is the deliberate adjustment of my life to the will of God.”

    • Kevin Parks says:

      Where does is say Fox medium age is 65? And you can spin it any way you want Bill, but numbers do not lie. Its this simple: FOX gives viewers what they want and they win. Now go back to your cnn on-line.

  4. Dee Win says:

    Another excellent source of information is C-Span. Watching Congressional hearings, and watching BO’s lackey prevaricate and squirm under tough questioning is quite entertaining.

  5. J. Phillip says:

    i interesting observation,

    int the 25-50 age group, Msnbc almost catches up with Fox,
    down that mean that msnbc will dominate in the near future ?

    • You note “almost catches”, but don’t bet on MSNBC ever surpassing FNC (much less “dominating”)! Most people get wiser with age. So to remind you of Sir Winston Churchill’s very true words: “Show me a young Conservative and I’ll show you someone with no heart. Show me an old Liberal and I’ll show you someone with no brains.”

  6. Sharin says:

    Ratings, favorability, decency, honesty, manners, ethics and morals mean nothing to the Progressive radical Leftists…they want what they want and too bad for the American citizens. But, at least those of us not blue know the truth and although we suffer because of the policies of the dems, we suffer with the truth as our guide!!

    • nnylkwah says:

      Ratings have nothing to do with facts or accuracy. Fox has been proven time and again to be lacking in both. Turn off you TV and seek the true through non-partisan news outlets. You are suffering because you on the right support plutocracy and don’t even see it. Unless you are one of the plutocrats.

      For the record, I am not a Democrat, but I am anti-plutocracy.

  7. Jack Bailey says:

    It is simple. Fox News out performs both MSNBC and CNN because it speaks to intelligent people who cannot be brain washed. I can’t understand how anyone could not see through the total lies and left wing propaganda put out with MSNBC. If that is the channel of choice, you are in for a big dose of reality. The world does not turn like that.

    • matt says:

      I find it funny that hard-core democrats complain that CNN and MSNBC both are in the corporations pockets. Seems that even ultra-leftists hate them too.

    • Dori says:

      I have to agree and what the terminally brainwashed don’t realize and refuse to explore is that Fox is far more prone to representing both sides of any issue, and providing a point/counter point to truly inform and let us decide.

  8. health care attorney says:

    So glad that media matters has declared the war on fax as won! LOL!!!!

  9. Sandman says:

    CNN Crossfire is unwatchable. If you listen to Van for more than a moment you may lose your soul for eternity.

  10. This has been the case for quite some time now, and there’s a damn good reason for it. But of course, the liberals will never see it.

  11. This lop-sided situation will go on until the remainder of the mostly leftist media decides that journalism is more important than a state supported agenda. People are sick of it. Every day I read assertions from certain sources that are so far apart from what I and most Americans are experiencing that I can scarcely believe an editorial staff would release it. Yet there it is. And I’ve said for years now that credibility in journalism is like blood. A media source loses enough of it, and it dies. Here is your proof.
    I suppose there will always be something like “The Peoples Daily.” But when you read THAT kind of spew with a logo like CBS on the header, it’s just child-like.

  12. Florida Jim says:

    If you are not watching Fox News you are not getting the truth! The others are pimps for Obama, soros, Marxists and America-haters why woud you watch such shows when you could get bothe sides of every issue on Fox News?

  13. Bill Reed says:

    Not bad for a round-the-clock right wing propaganda machine. Congrats on fooling a lot of people most of the time.

  14. Riley James says:

    wrong article; sorry!

  15. John Barnett says:

    So much for Media Matters and Soros defeating Fox. Typical Dem blowhearts.

  16. Riley Jame says:

    Now children, as you read Mr. Kissell’s article, please don’t think he in anyway dislikes Santa, Christmas, Festivus, Hanukkah or any of the other really cool holidays where drunk parents overindulge you with tons of toys. Mr. Kissell is a journalist, and, since this is the holiday season, his editors want him to write about Christmacy stuff. The presents will be there; trust me.

  17. James says:

    Well compared to shrill blatherings and nincompoopery of it’s competitors it’s small wonder.

  18. The reason that the liberal media outlets are failing is because the vast majority of people in this country are not liberals. It ain’t rocket science folks. On top of that you have folks like sharpton, matthews, maddow, bashair and their ilk constantly berating people.

  19. no fear says:

    I tried watching MSNBC, but I found it like watching a South African sign.

  20. LaVive says:

    I guess there really is a group of disenfranchised minorities in America–

    The dregs of the news business!

  21. And soon to be dismantled based on Executive Order. Only liberals AKA Stupid Naive or Evil watch the others. They like t stay stupid you know so they have an excuse when they are outed for voting for Obama. And Obamacare. And Gay Marriage. And Socialism. And so on. Stupidest people on earth.

  22. The One, The Only, The Beast, Nelson! says:


    • Bob Klein says:

      Typical liberal– no brains–name calling only

    • no that title goes to the race baiters at MSNBC…

    • Keyser says:

      I guess the American people simply got tired of being lied to on CBS, NBC, ABC, MSNBC, etc and turned to Fox news for actual news and not on-air commentators blowing smoke up Obama’s skirt for the last 5 years. Just saying. BTW, do you vote for a living or actually work for a living? It’s a thing I’ve got about ignoring people that my tax dollars support because you’re too lazy to go out and find a job.

    • johnt says:

      I would think a normal person would be more concerned with the racist in the WH taking over and ruining health care while driving up deficits. Oh, and Beghazi. Absorb this, you have all the other networks to lie to you, the networks that helped make Obama, why whine about one that doesn’t puke the same vomit they do?

    • Hw00d says:

      no doubt about it ;)

  23. Bruce Pal says:

    This is because the lefties already think they know everything so they don’t need to watch the news.

  24. Mike says:

    And the liberals just cannot stand that there is even one network that does not toe the party line. (They don’t even know what liberal means).
    This is proof of what theAmerican people want – not further Obama lies and propaganda

  25. Jerry M says:

    Should we be surprised that no one is watching the Obama regime’s propaganda organs.
    MSNBC has completely ignored the Obamacare disaster.

  26. Hw00d says:

    Anyone want real, actual, factual NEWS????
    www . republicbroadcasting . org

  27. Congratulations FoxNews channel. Keep it up and keep it real. Thank God for FoxNews.

    • Hw00d says:

      WOW, really????….is AmeriKa that obsessed w/ the hypno-toad of false news and dis-ifo???
      These propaganda machines are nothing factual, fair, nor balanced. Your apparently watching too much TV, turn off that idiot brainwash box and go do some actual investigating w/ out the talking bobbleheads, you’ll be shocked @ whats really going on around you!!!

      • Harold says:

        Isn’t it annoying when everything you hold dear and believe in is full of cr@p? Like LSDNBS, C-U-NN and HE-LN… So sad.

      • Cosmo says:

        Why don’t you give us all the examples of FNC lying? You can’t, you won’t because anything you print they lied about would be a lie on your behalf. The truth burns a liberal like Holy water to a vampire.

      • Guido Viviani says:

        And you seem like such a happy person…

      • Hw00d says:

        …and I gave up the idiot box in 95, discovered it was bad for good mental health and human rationale & reasoning. OK city bombing news lies all day, @ 1pm, ALL news stations were ordered to QUIT reporting on the other 2 UNEXPLODED bombs found inside….Except for News channel 4 (proud of that team), but then they got bought out by ABC and entire crew fired, so ya, this whole reporting scam crap is just that..a scam to obfuscate, confuse and divide!!!

      • Mike says:

        You think MSNBC or CNN are fair and balanced? They are lying propaganda pushers

      • Hw00d says:

        do ur research, follow the money and you will see who owns all these dis-info stations…good luck

      • Jsmith says:

        Wow yourself. Hate much?

      • General Drake says:

        You obviously don’t ever watch. FOX has 10 times more liberals on their show spouting their dishonest talking points than CNN, PMSnbc, and all the other cable “news” sources combined. You are walking talking proof that liberals HATE when BOTH sides are presented because you only exist by spouting false propaganda without challenge. Good luck with your brain…it’s so one sided you probably have to walk leaning over.

  28. Joe Lucido says:

    All we hear from most of the media is that Fox News lies, Fox News is not a news organization, Fox News can’t be trusted, Fox News this, Fox news that.

    If Fox News is all that, why is it that they get more viewers than the rest of the cable news outlets combined?

    Because the American people are smarter than all those other news organization give them credit for being, they think the American people are stupid, and will buy anything that they spout, well this proves them wrong.

    Fox News does lean right, but so do most of the American people, no matter how the rest of the media spins it.

    The American people can also make up their own minds, they can tell the difference between hard news and commentary. Fox does have Commentary that does bring up topics to debate, while the rest of them are too busy trying to knock Fox news off their perch, spouting one lie after another. If they spent half as much time on real news, as they do trying to knock Fox, they wouldn’t be trailing them as much as they do.

    Figures do not lie, but lyres figure.

  29. John Gault says:

    It speaks volumes that in AZ, late night and weekend programs for MSNBC are things likes “Lock Up” and other prison type shows reporting on the inmates of prisons around the country,

    They know their demographics – that’s for sure

  30. capoprimo says:

    As a general rule, except for local nightly news, I don’t even bother with ABC, NBC, CBS and don’t even know where MSNBC is. I like the truth and I like the facts and all of it untarnished by PC or slanted to make someone or something look good. One would think that those earning the really big bucks would by now have figured out what NEWS means?

  31. Hw00d says:

    So the major population of idiot sheep tune into the biggest lies & deny’s gubmint propaganda station, Whats the story here again???

    • Mike says:

      And the liberals just cannot stand that there is even one network that does not toe the party line. (They don’t even know what liberal means).
      This is proof of what the American people want – not further Obama lies and propaganda. an they are not idiot sheep – you are for believing Obama’s lies. And hasn’t that come back to bite you?

    • Groucho says:

      The one network, which isn’t even a network, and doesn’t have the advantage of free TV viewership, is somehow a government propaganda station?

      The reason FOX beats the others is that they are the only ones who actually give an unfiltered voice to the conservative viewpoint.. ALL the others are strictly left-wing propaganda. They ALL say the same thing. If the “word of the day” is “gravitas” that’s the word EVERY network will be parroting. When the IRS scandal gets too hot for Obama – the lamestreamers drop the story. It’s been like that for decades…

      If you can’t see that it is the “mainstream” media who are the propagandists, then you’re not just a sheep, you’re a blind sheep.

      P.S. I don’t watch FOX…I don’t have cable. So, smoke that in your pipe and stick it.

      • Hw00d says:

        I gave up the TV in 1995 couz, the OK City lie was just too much for me to try and watch that BS that day, tis when I realized and later investigated that ALL these lame stream news stations are u.s gubmint/israel controlled propaganda machines designed to trick the sheeple people
        Anyone want real, actual, factual NEWS????
        www . republicbroadcasting . org

      • Hw00d says:

        yes, they ALL are….zion owned propaganda machines are in full court press for obsfucation & disillusion news

  32. McFerguson says:

    To MSNBC and CNN: If you like your half-a-commie Networks, you can keep your half-a-commie Networks. Period. Nobody’s going to take them away from you. Period (except the folks, to paraphrase O’Reilly, when you don’t put any fannies in the seats).

  33. JohnD says:

    I’m sure the cretins at these networks will lie about this and accuse FOX of bribing the pollers

  34. Id like to say congrats to HLN, but when you’re down that low in the ratings I guess there’s nowhere to go but up!

  35. richard says:

    Fox news (Fair and balanced). That’s why it,s the most watched in the USA. It,s the best news outlet in the country.

    • Hw00d says:

      your delusional, these “news” stations are nothing but lies, dis-info and hiders of actual truth. Guess your one of those who think obo the klown killed OBL too???…..u poor misguided sheep

  36. Naysayer says:

    Didn’t Media Matters just proclaim Fox News defeated?

  37. Tom Platt says:

    Let’s see: Gallup Poll in May 2013 said 41% of Americans were economic conservatives, while only 19% were economic liberals. So, ABC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC and NBC are competing for 19% of the public, while leaving 41% for Fox? Could that be the answer? D-U-H-H!!!

    • khatman says:

      I generally trust Gallup Poll but the idea that 41% of Americans were economic conservatives seems very high to me. You certainly do not get that sense from election results. In my circle of acquaintences it would be more like maybe 30% tops. I don’t know for sure but they are supposed to be the experts.

  38. Banjo Pete says:

    It’s interesting to watch the anti-Fox liberal commentators rant and rave about Fox. Their own favorite networks (MSNBC, et al) have fewer viewers as the days and weeks go by. Their ratings are like a rock thrown off a cliff. It just keeps going down, down, down. No one with a hint of interest in the events of the day turns to Fox. Hence, the high ratings at Fox. .

    • Election results? Salesmanship has a lot to do with election results not fact. As is team/party loyalty and racial bias. And all are overlooking the fraud – in some areas over 100% of the eligible votes voted all for Obama, can’t be.

  39. It’s very simple, you either want to be lied to or you want “fair and balanced” news ..
    It’s all up to you ..

    • Hw00d says:

      its ALL lies there Albert, go research who owns ALL these so called “news” stations. Will just say they are all foreign owned by a particular “religious” Country that starts with an “I”. These propaganda machines are nothing factual, fair, nor balanced. Your apparently watching too much TV, turn off that idiot brainwash box and go do some actual investigating w/ out the talking bobbleheads, you’ll be shocked @ whats really going on around you!!!

  40. UncleKarma says:

    What will Rachael MadCow do? Chris Mathews can only do so many I’m in love with a guy named O shows or Ed Shultz the Union Paid lobbiest and one last question Has anyone ever seen maddow and Hayes in the same room at the same time? Anyone?

  41. Barfco says:

    All I see is a bunch of white Republicans. At least CNN and MSNBC have some people of color.

  42. Marie Clough says:

    I only watch Fox News. I absolutely will not watch other news channels. No news from them. Just the same old dribble, praising the President, his failures are successes to them, and nothing but lies, and the blame put on the Republicans. When they have no defense for the Presidents actions, they lay the blame to Bush, or the Republicans. Sickening and definitely not real news reporting!

  43. Kelly Laraia says:

    One suggestion for MSNBC and CNN, stop spending so much of your time talking about Fox and look inward at your own product. Make changes that will attract more viewers to your shows. MSNBC may be beyond repair but CNN could upgrade their prime time lineup. Dump Piers Morgan and replace with Jake Tapper or hire a smart conservative like Laura Ingraham.

  44. Tom Leone says:

    Mr. McCabe, Fox News has become mainstream because viewers get the truth. Unvarnished and without the left wing space cadet mumbo Jumbo, got it? THE TRUTH. Especially Megan Kelly and Greta, and Hannity….oops that’s just about ALL OF THEM.

  45. Sandrala says:

    So sad that so few people watch any kind of news at all. Only a couple million people out of the entire population care much about anything beyond the end of their own noses…

  46. Kalamer says:

    As it turns out Fox New Channell has been telling the truth all along.

  47. How to spot an obvious traitor on the Highway. It quite Obvious look for a white person driving a foreign car with at least 1 Obama bumper sticker on it

  48. So why has Foxnews become main stream media now?

  49. It looks like a majority of the people are wising up to the Communist lies that CNN and BSNBC spew. I hope so, because it is getting to the point where we are about to loose our freedom

  50. TLP says:

    I don’t understand these Ratings Numbers.

    Are we supposed to believe that More People wanna watch a News Channel that doesn’t get its Talking Points from the White House and Media Matters, or from a buncha journOlists (the “O” stands for Obama) like that little sweetheart – Peter Beinart?

    More People wanna hear shows that AREN’T laced with Vile Misogynist Diatribes aimed at women who happen to be on a different Cable Network and hold different views?

    They DON’T wanna watch a Network that employs a Jew Hating Racist Rev who OWES UNCLE SAM MILLION$, and call LOUIS FARRAKHAN a friend?

    That’s Wierd.

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