Fox News Prime Time Loses January Ratings Battle to MSNBC and CNN
For 19 consecutive years, Fox News has averaged more viewers than any of its cable news competitors. And this ratings dominance has made millionaires out of hosts like Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson.
But for, perhaps, the first time in the network’s history, it is facing competition from other Conservative channels. And Newsmax and OAN have the backing of former President Donald Trump.
In December, Fox News began to fall behind more left-leaning networks CNN and MSNBC. That fall continued in January as both liberal channels again bested Fox in the ratings battle.
The Washington Post reports, “In January, Fox reported monthly ratings that fell behind both of its main cable news competitors, CNN and MSNBC, for the first time in 20 years. Even Fox’s prime-time opinion juggernaut of Hannity, Ingraham and Tucker Carlson had a smaller combined audience than their CNN competitors did last month.”
The story continues, “And, unlike its rivals, Fox News had a worse January than it did a year ago. While CNN was up 128 percent in total viewers in prime time for the month, and MSNBC was up 53 percent, Fox was down 13 percent compared with a year earlier.”
The cable news network does have a built in excuse for the dip, however. According to Fox executives the channel saw a drop in viewers after Barack Obama’s wins in 2008 and 2012. Their argument is that Conservative viewers don’t want to tune into news about a Demcratic president. February’s ratings book will show whether or not that argument is valid.