First-quarter cable ratings were released today, and Fox News Channel’s Glenn Beck had the steepest declines again among cable news programs. The show from the polarizing talk-show host, whose future at Fox News beyond this year is uncertain, drew 1.9 million viewers, down 30% from 1Q 2010, and 462,000 in the 25-54 demo, down 37%. Still, Beck dominated his 5 PM slot and ranked as the fourth top-rated cable news program. Overall, Fox News logged its 37th consecutive quarter win with an average of 1.9 million viewers in primetime. CNN and MSNBC were jockeying for second place. MSNBC (841,000 vs. 795,000) prevailed in total viewers, and CNN edged MSNBC in the demo.
On the broadcast news side, Katie Couric, who will likely exit CBS Evening News in June, saw her newscast slip a tiny bit year-to-year. It averaged 6.43 million viewers, 1.98 million in 25-54, down from 6.45 million and 2.02 million, respectively a year ago and a new all-time low for CBS Evening News.
Here are the cable news standings at 5 PM, first in total viewers and then the demo:
Slot Show NET 2011 2010 2011 2010
M-F 5P-6P GLENN BECK FNC 1,939 2,781 462 731
M-F 5P-6P SITUATION ROOM CNN 726 661 205 149
M-F 5P-6P HARDBALL MSNBC 679 524 142 95
M-F 5P-6P SHOWBIZ TON. HLN 180 213 71 86
M-F 5P-6P FAST MONEY CNBC 216 249 46 55
*Viewers in thousands