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NBC Feasts on Strong Turnout for Thanksgiving Day Parade, Football

NBC enjoyed a ratings feast on turkey day thanks to the strong turnout for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the National Dog Show and “Thursday Night Football.”

The 91st annual Macy’s parade brought in a 12.5 household rating/27 share in Nielsen’s 56 overnight metered markets, which cover about 70% of U.S. TV households, and a 7.0 rating in the adults 18-49 demographic. This year’s 9 a.m.-noon telecast was down about 7% in households from last year, when the parade produced its highest ratings since 2002. NBC noted that this year’s parade marked the highest-rated non-sports program since ABC’s Academy Awards telecast on Feb. 26.

From noon-2 p.m., “The National Dog Show Presented by Purina” collared a 6.0/14 in metered market household rating and a 3.1 in 18-49. The household number was a little shy of last year’s turnout (6.4), which marked the event’s highest rating since 2003.

In primetime, “Thursday Night Football” showcase of the New York Giants at Washington Redskins brought in a 9.7 household rating in time-zone adjusted preliminary ratings (final national numbers for the game won’t be available until Monday). Viewership of the game, which ended in a 20-10 Redskins victory, was down 10% from last year’s turkey-tussle primetime NFL game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Indiana Colts that was carried on CBS.

NBC’s momentum throughout the day buoyed original telecasts of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” and “Late Night with Seth Meyers” to season highs. “Tonight Show,” which was delayed by the game’s overrun, hit a 2.7 household rating and 1.3 in adults 18-49, strong enough to match the season high set in January when Fallon had former first lady Michelle Obama as guest. “Late Night” weighed in with a 1.5 and 0.7 in 18-49.

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