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. Craig Taylor says:

    How very sad for MSNBC whose mission in life is to promote the communist state espoused by its clueless idol Obama. Even with “deep thinkers” like Scamming Al Sharpton and Tingles Matthews, MSNBC has been unable to successfully promote the Pravda philosophy..Sad, but true.

  2. tecate52cate says:

    Crap. Countdown to the arrival of the Pavlov’s foaming-at-the-mouth red hoards, 5, 4, 3, 2…

  3. See what happens when you report the news in a truthful way. Having a bunch of clueless mocking clowns regurgitate the lies that democrats fax to them gets old fast as their lies are easily disproven. Rush Limbaugh will never have a problem discussing issues on his show as the mocking clowns go into their name calling personal attack mode , racist this and racist that whenever someone discusses a side of the issue that wasn’t faxed by a democrat.

  4. A real “Hardball” interview Tingles gave Obama recently.

    And they wonder why they have no ratings.

  5. Fred Kenyon says:

    Many congrats & thanks to Roger Ailes for giving the news junkies what we want; fair balanced news as it happens – with conservative opinion programming capturing the prime-time slots. Also, we love when you roll-out the liberal pin-heads with their foot-in-mouth disease.

    FRK. Gaithersburg, MD

    • catherine1000 says:

      amen amen, and when you see that freak Jackson’s daughter with her perfect face and perfect language LIE TO OUR FACES, THANK YOU FOX

      AND JUAN THAT DUMBAS- deserves what Obama is doing to us, the REST OF US DON’T

  6. Kevin Brent says:

    In a nation of 310 million people, how is having 1.774 million on average viewers per night, “winning”? I mean they all blow chunks, but if the best the top network is doing is under 2 million in 310 million, then no one is watching, are they?

    • Hw00d says:

      Kevin gets it ;) These faux “News” channels are rapidly dying, I think AmeriKa is finally waking up to the fact that this dinosaur media has lied to US so much and ppl are looking for real truth news now….its AWESOME!!!
      www . republicbroadcasting . org
      “Because YOU CAN handle the Truth!”

    • Dr. Van Nostrand says:

      Just keep crying like a bitch Skippy.

    • Kelly Amous says:

      Americans are too busy watching sports, sitcoms, reality TV and reading about movie stars. That is precisely why the US is in such a mess.

  7. Liberallie says:

    He is white. <3 history

  8. Sparky2 says:

    The reason for the win by Fox is that the viewer educational level for Fox News is the highest of all the news channels. Fox presents the truth. The problem is liberals see it as opposed to their agenda and claim that Fox is ‘far right’ when in fact they just report facts…which by the way is why liberal radio never succeeds..they look stupid when confronted by conservatives!

    • They also start the name calling at that point. they especially like to go after the Tea Party this way. Before it was Bush. When ever the Liberal media mentioned would report on anything to do with the TEA Party they always searched and searched for the stupidest person they could find or the one person who was an obvious racist to put on TV and call them the face of the Tea Party. Of Course they do the same thing with Natural disasters or car wrecks or shootings they find the least knowledgeable and most ignorant sounding person they can find. When the Travon Martin thing happened they did the same thing with that woman. They put a microphone in her face and just let her talk her way to stupidity and won the case for Zimmerman. This stuff is typical and has been going on for a long time

    • catherine1000 says:


  9. proffdarrell says:

    So how can they count all the people who dont have cable? You dont know what thier watching. This fake poll was paid for by the teabagging teapartyers. I garantee that most watch NBC CBS and ABC just like ot was 40 years ago because not everybody has cable. SO you cant say fox is king

    • Man, you’re a moron .. How do I know ? Just look at your grammar , it’s pathetic, let alone what you say ..

    • Max17 says:

      obaggers say the dumbest things. Here’s one that thinks Neilson doesn’t track non-cable television. ROFL! Then it gets a good, tight twat knot because FOX is leading in ‘cable news.’

      No wonder a failure like obama can get elected twice. Blame our current mess on the obaggers.

    • RedInDenver says:

      Rubbish! Network TV ratings have fallen, now that they’re not the only game in town; and Fox News is being watched by more and more people because they’re the ONLY news organization that consistently maintains an adversarial stance with this administration. MOST people want the TRUTH from news organizations — not cheerleaders for their own political preferences. However, based on your biased comments, it’s obvious you’re not in that category.

    • Thomas Winton says:

      You’re a RACIST!

  10. The only reason Obama was re-elected was because he lied about Obamacare.

    “If you like your plan you can keep your plan.”

    If voters knew then what they know now he’d be out on his *ss.

    • ric2008 says:

      Heyy Proffdarrell…go teabag this!!! And learn to spell! garentee!!! lol

    • proffdarrell says:

      I’m tired of you blaming Obama for everything. Also it’s called Affordable Care Act. If you going to atack Obama for it then you need to attack every person in the House and Senate who also voted for it to be fair! The teachers’ plans will never be affected so I really dont care one way or the other about ACA.

      • slap your head says:

        Hey, Genius. Let me help you out: NOT A SINGLE REPUBLICAN, IN EITHER HOUSE OR SENATE, voted for the abysmal train wreck that the world calls Obamacare. Not one. So, yes – blame the idiot democRats all you want. Spread the blame around to all the leftists who thought the government could take over 1/6 of the economy and improve it rather than screw it up, and blame them. But also blame Obama, because he is the jackhole who ran on the idea, promoted it, lied about it, and shoved it down your throat. It doesn’t surprise me that you don’t care about Obama’s f-up, since you are a selfish teacher’s union thug, and you think it won’t affect you. I’m going to laugh when you start getting hikes in your premiums and longer lines at your doctor’s office (if he is still in business) while all the illegals show up on your dime and your time. You deserve every bit of misery you are about to endure. By the way, nobody cares what tires you.

      • I do blame the house and the senate, moron.. I blame every single democrat, because ( I know you don’t know this) not ONE single Republican voted for that monstrosity, not one ..
        By the way, check back into third grade you need a few more lessons on spelling and punctuation .. ..

      • Even Obama called it Obamacare before it went sour. And not a single Republican voted for it. It is 100% a Democratic construct.

      • Ronbet says:

        So, you’ve got yours and the Hell with everybody else! Typical union thinking.

      • Please tell me you are not a teacher! I pity any person being educated by people of your narrow thinking and lack of intelligence. First of all, we do blame the both the Democratic Obama House and Senate for OBAMACARE. Not a single republican voted for it. Your inability to look at facts and do research is living proof of why our education system is among the worst in the industrial world. Stupid people teaching kids equals stupid kids. Such a shame!

      • Samuellenn says:

        Who are we suppose to blame? Hes the one causing all the bad things.

      • Denileriverafter says:

        OBAMA called it Obamacare, and was proud to do so, before it turned out to be such an obvious train wreck! There’s NOTHING “affordable” in it either. Wanna go back to blaming EVERYthing that ever happened in American history on Bush?!!

      • It’s Obama’s signature piece of legislation – based on lies, and a complete train wreck because of his incompetence.

        And you better believe all the Democrats who voted for it will be punished in November be everyone who lost their plan or had their premiums skyrocket.

        Obama is a liar, the bill comes due in November,

  11. After hearing Chris Mathews or Al Sharpton or any of the Leftist propaganda talking heads for a couple minutes one quickly ascertains they are not watching the news but people trying to make news by their leftist politically correct on air nonsense.
    They seem to be the only really Fair and Balanced cable news outlet.

  12. kestrel27 says:

    Yes, but CNNMSNBC, will continue to re-arrange the deck chairs on their sinking Titanic with one Progressive airhead after another doing the same thing over and over, yet expecting different results. It’s who Progressives are and what they do! Their absolute arrogance assures them that they are right even though the facts tell them otherwise. It’s actually quite funny.

  13. mark Carswell says:

    It has been my belief all along that these ‘losers’ were victims of their own lousy ways of reporting daily happenings. Their ‘Leftist’ attitudes were if we don’t like it or doesn’t fit our story we don’t print it. They filter the news to slant their way. Fox was straight from the shoulder like news is supposed to be delivered.

  14. Sparky2 says:

    Simple reason. They understand what Americans feel and are not controled by the democrat party!

  15. What a triumph says:

    Wow, 3 million viewers between the three of them. Congratulations to Fox News for claiming the lion’s share of less than 1% of the American public.

  16. Fel121 says:

    And we wonder why we have an electorate of misinformed half-wits who contnue to vote for the bag of plutocrates bent on turning the middle class into a 21st century slave labor force.

  17. Dick Sicario says:

    It’s those Fox Info Babes !
    Plus the absence of liberal BS

  18. Oh shhhhh . . . don’t tell Chris-I’m-Off-My-Meds-Again Mathews, over as MessNBC, he’ll really have a spittin’ & sputterin’ tirade!!

    The de-ranged bunch over at the lefty-channels will probably demand more and more face-time so they can somehow, someway get their Marxist Manifesto out to the suckers, ‘er people, who need to know.

    This really creates quite a quandary for these lefties . . . how are they going to keep ‘ol Obama afloat if nobody’s listening?!

    They’ll find a way . . . they have so far.

  19. suzy000 says:

    This tells me one thing…..those that voted for Obama DO NOT watch ANY news stations. They are definitely the low information voter. It is safe to assume that the majority of Fox viewers voted Republican and the other 52% of Obama voters are watching which station? With the combined ratings of the others that surely isn’t 52% of the rest of the voters…..and to think…they picked our leader without any knowledge of the candidate. No wonder this country is in decline.

    • Joan Lussier says:

      Talk about the uninformed out there. Just watch when Leno or Fox goes out into the streets and ask
      the public questions. Talk about a bunch of dumb ass people. Some don’t even know who is the
      first President of USA is. I would assume you all know whom I am talking about.

  20. S Alton says:

    CNNs best hope is the construction of more airports. Without trapped aiport viewers, few people would even know they are still around. Lying/bias reporting does eventually take its toll.

  21. Megyn Kelly’s program is great and keeps a tab on our government, thank you Megyn.

  22. Charles van Heck says:

    CNN won’t face the fact that many are boycotting the network as long as they keep the child molester Anderson Cooper on the air.

  23. robuo says:

    Bechel is a sloppy, smug liberal apologist who sucks A$$ – and I say that with all due respect to A$$es. Why doesnt FOX dump him, Juan Williams, and the ever hard-to-stomach Alan Colmes. They would still be liberal, just not crazy liberal. Anyone appears conservative next to MSNBC. However, there is a subtle game being played, the puppet masters are trying to move the country left by putting FOX out there as the ersatz marker for ideological boundary of the right, when in reality, FOX is not that far right, particularly since Glen Beck left. MSNBC is put out there as the boundary of the left, when in reality, they are fairly radical Lefties, but they’re still not the extreme. The net effect is that people are pushed ever toward the left by trying to define the extremes of thought on each end, with an overall leftward bias and by trying to marginalize the “principled right” (tea party). The reality is, the real left and right ideological boundaries are much farther away from these arbitrary limits than most realize.

    • steve mackey says:

      Good analysis!

    • Roger Dowd says:

      Bechel and Williams are legitimate advocates for their points of view, as much as I often disagree with them. They present their arguments cogently and they are often outnumbered. Even in heated exchanges it appears that their Fox colleagues respect them. Colmes is another story. But more to your point; without them “The Five” and other Fox opinion slots would end up being the right’s equivalent of MSNBC; opinion without any balance. The strength of Fox is it’s willingness to allow heated debate, although the lefties refuse to see that. They prefer the kind of cheerleading they have grown accustomed to and hate Fox because it’s programming doesn’t validate their biases.

  24. all tv cable news is worthless anyways…

  25. tsc11 says:

    Congrats FNC. The sickening hateful hosts of MSNBC are unwatchable.

  26. Steve Hughes says:

    Right…….FUX news, the ONLY “news” station that sued in COURT to continue its BULLSHIT CONservative reporting with all kinds of TEApublican lying slants, added words, made up stories and unfettered Koch brothers horseshit. FUX ‘news’ claimed it has the right to add on and or delete key words and phrases, do the same for videos ‘BECAUSE FUX ‘news’ BY THEIR OWN STATEMENT SAID THEY ARE A FREAKING ‘ENTERTAINMENT’ SHOW, LIKE SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, AND AS SUCH CAN MODIFY, ALTER AND CHANGE KEY WORDS, PHRASES AND ANY OTHER THING THAT A GOOD COMEDIAN WOULD DO, and “as such are NOT RESPONSIBLE or Accountable to report ACCURATE stories on their “FUX Spews show……That’s why they call themselves a ‘news’ station rather a B.S. station…… The TRUE news media reports it as it is, but , hey, Rednecks love a good laugh while they’re hittin the Jug, and waitin’ fer the BIG GUMMINT to “come git thar Rifleguns’ now that there is so much AMMO it’s selling for CHEEP after FUX ran stories of the Big Gummint stashing all the bullets…… Now as you’re hurling insults, why don’t ya go and GOOGLE this for yourselves, as Sarah ‘Batsh*t’ Palin would say, and see how all that Crocky/Crappy stuff is workin’ fer ya! You Betcha!

    • doug sears says:

      Fox Primetime is not Fox news. Its entertainment and satire.

    • Thomas Winton says:

      Steve Hughes, you’re a RACIST!

    • Kano Kroil says:

      Get your “news” from Comedy Central? Oh and seek help you have some real anger issues that need to be worked out. I’d hate to see you turn into another left wing mass shooter (as they all seem to hold about the same views as you).

    • Ted Steiner says:

      Steve Hughes, I’m convinced. You present such a cogent, coherent, reasoned set of facts, not wild-eyed opinion,and done with excellent phrasing, spelling, and no words in caps, that how can I, a simple, uneducated, unsophisticated Southerner, not become an instant Liberal follower, especially with you very clever repetition of the misspelling of the word Fox?

    • Gypsy says:

      You’re completely insane. Bitter angry envious POS.

    • steve mackey says:

      Har har. You lose Hughes. Embrace the suck!

    • maroon says:

      You are being sarcastic? You must be … remember the edited 911 call and doctored videos ABC and MSNBC played about Zimmerman? Those networks are being sued for slander and liable. And rightfully so. Fox isn’t just talking heads, most of the programs are news.
      you sound like you are crazy.

  27. ONTIME says:

    You think for a moment it might be the overall content of the subjects being discussed and the many various aspects discussed in a objective, unbiased forthright way that draw FOX that overwhelming audience?

    • Ozzie Nielsen says:

      Fox News’ “overwhelming audience” is less than one-half of one percent of the American public… and that’s in prime time. The rest of the day, their numbers are far lower. And MSNBC and CNN don’t even draw that much. Only chumps buy into the “my team/your team” horse race of these little-watched channels fighting over who gets the biggest crumbs.

  28. The executives at CNN & MSNBC are racking their brains. They keep getting new liberal hosts and shows and the results continue to be the same, they just can’t figure out why they can’t peddle their left-wing crap and still have ratings.

    They just keep trying to frame the news instead of reporting it. I guess they would rather be the propaganda machines for the DNC than a profitable businesses.

  29. Fluffy Bunnies says:

    People are still missing out if they only get their news from the TV.

  30. Rosebud says:

    When you have deceptive, cover up, corrupt editing, so-called news organizations like the alphabet trashy networks, people are totally turned off. And CNN, forget it.

  31. Don says:

    That’s nothing, word on the street is that you are an idiot!

  32. roadsterred says:

    My close sibling doesn’t watch Fox because she says it is so biased towards the right. I don’t know which shows she’s watching on Fox, but with an opinion like that there’s no cure for her.

    • You have to ask yourself why, after being trounced year upon year, Fox’ competitors do not imitate their success and move right? Never mind, we know the answer…they are all hard-core Lefties and would rather die than switch. It is NOT business to them.

  33. MSNBC is propaganda not news. They act like white house staff.

    • Mr.Bobo says:

      The cure is simple she needs psychological help. You should have an immediate intervention and commit her to a proper facility. Maybe after a few years she could be reintroduced to a normal environment.

  34. Mr.Bobo says:

    Leftist libs are mentally deranged. Everyone knows that. When normal adults want news they watch fox. When psychologically impaired morons want to feel normal they watch CNN msnbc Hln etc. these losers have nothing else to do. They are low rent scum bags. They hate everything positive about America and mankind.

  35. Sgt Maj says:

    CNN is all washed up without direction. IT’s neither news nor talk and, while no one wants to admit it, has always tiled to port. IT’s just a poor clone of MSNBC which. hopefully, will not change a bit of programming and eventually just go broke and disappear. A network that hires Al Shortporn, Special Ed, Chris Tingle and Larry “I hate Mormons” O’Donnell deserves being ignored.

    As much as Fox News annoys the White House is as good as it gets. It’s too bad the rest of the media sold itself to the devil and stopped doing journalism on behalf of a Chicago thug who is intent on destroying the American way of life.
    Fox deserves top ratings!

  36. rawhheadrex says:

    As long as Fox gives Bechel a platform to spew his unqualified views, I watch no news. Television is the goose that lays the golden egg; but Fox has joined LSM delivering scrambled eggs to a public of indiscernible taste. Cavuto and Stoessel, as qualified as they are, simply do not balance the presence of someone who puts his mouth in gear without regard to engaging what passes for a brain.
    I am recovering from 40 years of a television new career.

    • Sammie says:

      Bechel is on an opinion program, no one is forcing you to watch that show.
      cut off your nose to spite your face much?

      • Flippy says:

        Bechel is a sloppy, smug liberal apologist who sucks A$$ – and I say that with all due respect to A$$es. Why doesnt FOX dump him, Juan Williams, and the ever hard-to-stomach Alan Colmes. They would still be liberal, just not crazy liberal. Anyone appears conservative next to MSNBC. However, there is a subtle game being played, the puppet masters are trying to move the country left by putting FOX out there as the ersatz marker for the ideological boundary for the right, when in reality, FOX is not that far right, particularly since Glen Beck left. MSNBC is put out there as the boundary for the left, when in reality they are RADICAL Lefties, but not that far left (although Harris-Perry, and Whatshername Schultz are quite the prizes). The net effect is that people are pushed ever toward the center by trying to artificially define the extremes of thought on each end. The reality is, the real left and right ideological boundaries are much farther away from these arbitrary limits than most realize.

  37. Duelles says:

    Retires like myself have no TV, but get Fox Radio on demand. It might change the numbers, but not our attitudes or disposition.

  38. joey says:

    He isn’t an egomaniac that is just his style. He also gives millions of dollars to help our veterans every year including his latest venture getting disabled vets track chairs.

  39. RobertCosta says:

    I think that the success of Fox makes Joe insecure….

  40. Ron says:

    ….”Stop hiding behind those numbers Burgundy”!!!

  41. Pat Jones says:

    It must be nice to know so much. I mean, you “don’t believe a word” because you’ve decided that Nielsen is “probably” owned by Rupert Murdock. (Good enough for you, huh?) And of course you can declare Variety wrong because, obviously, you read it. But wow! To be able to denounce and dismiss FOX News so confidently, even as you admit that you don’t watch it! People on the left have such incredibly acute powers of observation that they can see things that aren’t there… without even looking!

  42. Paul Verlaine says:

    So peculiar! I like Fox because it does have a right-wing slant, and I think much of the other media simply ignores conservative viewpoints. But if FOX is so popular, why did 0bama win two terms? Nothing on FOX would have encouraged people to re-elect such a failed president. But he won anyway. So, maybe it doesn’t matter who is “ratings champ”?

    • robuo says:

      some call it voter fraud…

      • SuziQPublic says:

        I believe Obama got elected, and reelected because most minorities voted for him, without caring what his political agenda was. They wanted someone who looked like them. He also got the vote of young people who wanted to look cool by voting for “the black guy”. He also got the Liberal vote. Obama owed the “low information” folks….that is how he won……Because Paul Verlaine asked.

    • PapaUmMaoMao says:

      Apples & Oranges, Paul… FNC’s “popularity” has nothing to do with the 2012 election results. BTW… if you are truly a regular viewer of FNC, which I doubt you really are, you would likely had seen past programming that covered this very topic and comprehensively explained how and why Romney lost the election…

      • Fruits & Nuts says:

        Watching Karl Rove have a mental breakdown on the air Election Night was one of the most entertaining things ever broadcast on television.

  43. PapaUmMaoMao says:

    I am not a supporter of the president by any means, but your user name is offensive and immature. You should change it… seriously!

  44. Lazybum says:

    @ kettlecorn- great point. Obama has yet to give a speech or attend an event where he makes himself the center, and not in a self-deprecating way either.

    It is funny how low information liberals like Joe project their very faults onto others.

    And BTW, I do not watch O’Rielly.

  45. Laker says:

    I am a news junkie but all of these networks are becoming unwatchable. They are increasing the number of commercials and decreasing real content. For me I am now preferring to watch C-Span or read a book.

  46. ObserverMI says:

    That’s the problem….
    You bash something you don’t even watch, then claim you know what they’re ”obsession” is.

    Can’t you see the problem here?

  47. mirgc says:

    Not surprising. Especially when watching MSNBC. Foxnews is all MSNBC seems to want to talk about!

  48. Lazybum says:

    Joe L- apparently that is all you have ever watched. You may be fooling yourself, and a few other low-information types, but the real truth is out there, and you ain’t telling it.

  49. PapaUmMaoMao says:

    30 seconds is your limit? Be honest… 30 seconds is more likely the limit of your overall attention span…

  50. Lazybum says:

    The funny part? What station is on during your walk through the airport or hotel? Fox?. No, for some reason whoever is in charge of the “Big Remote” prefers the 3rd place station, CNN.

    Does anyone know why? It makes no sense.

    • maroon says:

      Yes, it is odd, as Fox is the more popular show. You didn’t say which airport you were in. Usually big cities are filled with Dems, so maybe they are playing to that demographic? Or the union guy that controls the remote is a big Obama supporter ..

    • Golfendude says:

      FAA mandates that CNN will be on PERIOD!

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