Top-ranked ABC World News Tonight maintains significant ratings lead

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All three of the network’s evening newscasts lost viewers from the previous week, according to Nielsen’s live and same-day data.

ABC World News tonight with David Muir remains at the top of the evening news food chain, averaging more than 7.435 million total viewers and 1.28 million adults 25-54 for the week of August 1. The 7.435 million figure means World News Tonight is again the most-watched show on US television – excluding sports and syndication – for the week. Additionally, ABC’s evening news has now beaten competitors NBC and CBS 192 of the last 193 weeks in average total viewership and 121 of the last 123 weeks in adults 25-54.

World News Tonight fell -2% in total viewership and -3% in the Adults 25-54 demo from the previous week (July 25). World News Tonight was flat in total viewership and was down -5% among adults 25-54 from the comparable week of 2021 (August 2).

NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt averaged 6.02 million total viewers on the linear network, or -3% from the previous week, to go with 927,000 adults ages 25-54, or -3% from the previous week. The 6.02 million figure places airplay at No. 3 in US television, excluding specials, sports and syndication. Nightly News saw the largest year-over-year declines of the three evening newscasts, -13% in total viewers and -35% among adults 25-54. This bad trend isn’t particularly surprising given that the week a year ago was also week #2 of the delayed 2020 Summer Olympics airing on NBC. More adults 25-54 watch Nightly News during a week of the NBC Olympics than usual, which likely explains the discrepancy between the year-over-year losses in total viewership (viewers more older) and year-over-year losses among adults aged 25-54.

On a more positive note, across digital, Nightly News had its best week since April, with 12.2 million video views on and off network platforms, according to data from Adobe Analytics and partner portals; YouTube analytics portal.

Additionally, on Thursday, August 4, NBC Nightly was renamed “NBC Nitely News” due to NFL preseason football. The renamed show was dropped from the season and weekly averages, meaning Nielsen’s ratings for the week of August 1 for NBC Nightly News are based on four days, not five.

The CBS Evening News with Norah O’Donnell averaged 4.50 million total viewers and 751,000 adults aged 25-54 for the first week of August. That’s -3% in total viewers and stable among adults 25-54 compared to the previous week. Evening News fell -6% in total viewers and -6% among adults 25-54 compared to the comparable week in 2021.

On Friday, August 5, CBS Evening News was rebranded as “CBS Evening Nws”. The renowned TV show is excluded from the weekly and seasonal averages, and the ratings for the week of August 1 are based on just four, not five days.

Nielsen live plus same day averages for the week of August 1, 2022:

ABC NBC SCS
• Total number of viewers: 7,435,000 6,022,000 4,502,000
• A25-54: 1,278,000 927,000 751,000

Source: The Nielsen Company, NTI Total Viewers, Adults 25-54 Live + SD Current Week (without 08/01/22), Last Week (without 07/25/22) and Week a Year Ago (with or 02/08/21). The most recent: season 2021-2022 (20/09/21 – 07/08/22) and season 2020-2021 (21/09/20 – 08/08/21). Nielsen ratings for ABC, NBC and CBS include additional airings in select markets. As of 8/31/20, the national rankings also include out-of-home viewing (OOH). Averages based on regular telecasts.