Bad times for Trump equal ratings boosts for MSNBC

By Matt Collins Article may include affiliate links

For the month of August 2018, “The Rachel Maddow Show” was the top program in A25-54 across all of cable news as well as for the 9 p.m. time period, including all specials, according to Nielsen.

  • In A25-54, “Maddow” averaged 557,000 viewers (vs. Fox News’ 547,000 and CNN’s 406,000), beating CNN for the 19th straight month.
  • In total viewers, “Maddow” averaged 2.9 million total viewers (vs. CNN’s 1.2 million), beating CNN for the 63rd straight month and ranking as the Number 2 most-watched show across all cable news.
  • In August, MSNBC posted growth in both dayside weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and total day (Monday to Sunday 6 a.m. to 6 a.m.) over August 2017, while CNN and Fox News both declined. 
  • MSNBC prime (Monday to Friday 8 to 11 p.m.), dayside and total day all ranked Number 2 across all of cable television in total viewers, ahead of Number 5 CNN in weekday prime, Number 4 CNN in dayside, and Number 5 CNN in total day.
  • August marked the 21st straight month MSNBC topped CNN in weekday prime; the 18th straight month MSNBC topped CNN in total day; and the 11th straight month MSNBC topped CNN in dayside in total viewers. In dayside and total day, August was MSNBC’s most-watched month ever, with record total viewer ratings.
  • MSNBC dayside averaged 1.1 million total viewers (vs. CNN’s 779,000), while total day averaged 1.04 million total viewers (vs. CNN’s 705,000). 
  • “Morning Joe” (Monday to Friday, 6 to 9 a.m.) led CNN in both A25-54 and total viewers for the month. August was also a record month for “Morning Joe,” with the show’s highest-ever monthly total viewer ratings.
  • The program averaged 1.1 million viewers, doubling CNN (544,000) and topping CNN for the 42nd consecutive month.
  • “Morning Joe” was the only cable news program in its timeslot to post growth over August 2017 in total viewers (+8% vs. CNN’s -15% Fox News’ -5%). In A25-54, “Morning Joe” averaged 232,000 viewers, beating CNN (169,000) for the 10th straight consecutive month.
  • “The 11th Hour with Brian Williams” was Number 1 at 11pm, beating Fox News and CNN in both A25-54 and total viewers. “The 11th Hour” averaged 319,000 viewers A25-54 – topping CNN for the 11th consecutive month – and 1.7 total million viewers, besting CNN for the 25th consecutive month.
  • “Deadline: White House” at 4 p.m. had a record month, topping both Fox News and CNN in its highest-rated month ever in total viewers. “Deadline” averaged 1.5 million total viewers and was the only cable news program to grow in its hour over August 2017 (+25% vs. CNN’s -13% and Fox News’ -11%).
  • Several additional MSNBC programs beat CNN in both A25-54 and total viewers. “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” at 10 p.m. averaged 2.2 million total viewers (vs. CNN’s 1.2 million), topping CNN for the 39th straight month, and 398,000 viewers A25-54 (vs. CNN’s 393,000), beating CNN for the 11th straight month.
  • Both “MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle” at 9 a.m. and “MSNBC Live with Hallie Jackson” at 10 a.m. also beat CNN in both demographics.
  • MSNBCLive with Stephanie Ruhle” beat CNN in total viewers for the 19th consecutive month, and was the only cable news program during the hour to post growth over August 2017 (+12% vs. CNN’s -15% and Fox News’ -8%).
  • MSNBC Live with Hallie Jackson” beat CNN in total viewers for the 11th consecutive month, and was the only cable news program during the hour to post growth over August 2017 (+12% vs. CNN’s -11% and Fox News’ -7%).
  • The following MSNBC shows had their most-watched month on record: “Morning Joe” at 6am, “MSNBC Live with Hallie Jackson” at 10am, “MSNBC Live with Velshi & Ruhle” at 11 a.m., “Andrea Mitchell Reports” at 12 p.m., “MSNBC Live with Craig Melvin” at 1 p.m., “MSNBC Live with Katy Tur” at 2 p.m., “MSNBC Live with Ali Velshi” at 3 3 p.m., “Deadline: White House” at 4 p.m., “MTP Daily” at 5 p.m., and “The Beat with Ari Melber” at 6 p.m. all had their highest monthly total viewer ratings ever.
  • Weekdays, more viewers chose MSNBC than CNN. Every hour of MSNBC’s weekday programming between 5 a.m.-3 a.m. beat CNN in total viewers, including: “Morning Joe First Look” at 5 a.m. for the 10th month in a row; “Morning Joe” from 6-9 a.m. for the 42nd straight month; “MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle” at 9 a.m. for the 19th straight month; “MSNBC Live with Hallie Jackson” at 10 a.m. for the 11th straight month; “MSNBC Live with Velshi and Ruhle” at 11 a.m. for the 11th straight month; “Andrea Mitchell Reports” at 12 p.m. for the 14th straight month; “MSNBC Live with Craig Melvin” at 1 p.m. for the 10th straight month; “MSNBC Live with Katy Tur” at 2 p.m. for the 10th straight month; “MSNBC Live with Ali Velshi” at 3 p.m. for the 10th straight month; “Deadline: White House” at 4 p.m. for the 11th straight month; “MTP Daily” at 5 p.m. for the 16th straight month; “The Beat with Ari Melber” at 6 p.m. for the 14th straight month; “Hardball with Chris Matthews” at 7 p.m. for the 25th straight month; “All In with Chris Hayes” at 8 p.m. for the 21st straight month; “The Rachel Maddow Show” at 9 p.m. for the 63rd straight month; “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” at 10 p.m. for the 39th straight month; and “The 11th Hour with Brian Williams” at 11 p.m. for the 25th straight month. 
  • On Saturdays, “AM Joy” at 10 a.m. bested CNN in total viewers for the 11th straight month, averaging 1,065,000 viewers (vs. CNN’s 736,000). On Sundays, “AM Joy” at 10 a.m. beat CNN in total viewers for the 8th month year-to-date, averaging 947,000 viewers (vs. CNN’s 816,000). On Sundays, “Kasie DC” at 7 p.m. beat CNN in total viewers for the 5th straight month and was the only cable news show to grow in its timeslot over August 2017 (+14% vs. CNN’s -29% and FOX News’ -20%). “Kasie DC” averaged 833,000 total viewers (vs. CNN’s 690,000).
  • August 2018 ratings are based on Nielsen Live+Same data day for 7/30/18-8/26/18. Individual show data represents regular programming only, excluding specials and breaking news.