Fox News Channel finished first with total viewers among basic cable networks in primetime during the third quarter of 2015. It’s the first time the cable news network has won in the metric for an entire quarter. The quarter was chock full of news ratings magnets including FNC’s telecast of the first GOP debate on August 6 that logged a whopping 24 million viewers (7.9M in the news demo), making it the highest-rated non-sports cable telecast in U.S. TV history.
In primetime, FNC posted 1.95M viewers and 395K news demo viewers. CNN followed with 814K viewers and 251K news demo viewers. MSNBC trailed with 625K viewers and 140K news demo viewers.
The Kelly File was the quarter’s No. 1 cable news show in the news demo with its rocket-fueled post-debate telecast; The O’Reilly Factor is No. 1 in the demo otherwise, and delivered its highest-rated quarter in total viewers (2.87 million) since Q4 2012. In total viewers, O’Reilly’s show clocked 2.87M viewers for the quarter, to Kelly’s 2.53M. In the news demo, The Kelly File averaged 509K viewers, closely followed by The O’Reilly Factor’s 503K.