ABC Tops NBC Again in Evening News Ratings — Is NBC Being ‘Squeezed’?

Apr 15, 2015  •  Post A Comment

As Brian Williams continues to serve out a six-month suspension from his NBC anchor’s chair, ABC continues to post ratings victories over perennial evening news leader NBC.

The AP reports that ABC’s “World News Tonight” topped NBC’s “Nightly News” for the week ending April 12, the second consecutive win for the ABC program and only its second weekly win since 2009. Citing Nielsen figures, AP reports that “World News Tonight” averaged 8.3 million viewers to 8 million for “Nightly News.”

The “CBS Evening News” came in third with 6.8 million viewers.

Up until ABC’s win the previous week, NBC had won 288 weeks in a row, the report notes.

“The NBC newscast has been in limbo since Williams was suspended in late February, with Lester Holt filling in. Williams was suspended for telling a false story about his experiences covering the Iraq War, launching an internal investigation within NBC about whether there are other instances that he wasn’t truthful,” AP reports.

The report cites consultant Andrew Tyndall, who examines the content of evening newscasts, indicating that the gains by ABC are part of a trend that has also included a shift toward ABC in the morning news race. Said Tyndall: “This is the last domino to fall.”

The AP report adds: “NBC’s ‘Nightly News’ is being squeezed, with viewers attracted to a lighter news touch heading to ABC and those seeking a more traditional newscast heading to CBS, Tyndall said. There is evidence, however, that under David Muir the past few months ABC’s emphasis on celebrities and other lighter fare is lessening, he said.”

abc world news tonight


  1. Well, Muir still isn’t quite right. He now making every story “Breaking News” so it lessens the impact of a true breaking news story. It’s overkill. I find I prefer Lester Holt more now. I never did like Brian Williams, so that’s why I watched David Muir. But now that’s changing.

  2. The awful commercials on each of the evening newscasts tell the whole story. They’re largely hawking pharmaceuticals for the ills besetting people over the age of 55 or 60. What an exciting demographic over which to be worried about the fickle ratings.

  3. NBC is the most biased of the three! More propaganda than news. ABC seems to be targeting the younger audience. I think CBS puts out a more straight forward news program.

  4. The viewership is down because Brian Williams isn’t there. People were upset and still are. Call it a “boycott” because that is what it is.. I tried to watch Holt, but can’t. ABC isn’t very interesting to me, and neither is CBS. Now I go to BBC or other sites, and will continue until Williams is back. I do believe that is what it is going to take, for NBC to get the ratings lead back.

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