Fox News Finishes Year Beating CNN, MSNBC into Ground Both in Primetime and Daytime

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It’s certainly been an interesting year for Fox News in 2018.

The cable news titan has had to apologize for everything from Kid Rock’s attack on Joy Behar to a commentator comparing failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to herpes.

Fox News has had to deal with controversy surrounding an ad from President Donald Trump, and it even went after Trump over comments he made after Sen. John McCain’s death.

And yet through all of the ups and downs, once the dust settled, the network stood head and shoulders above its cable news rivals.

According to a Fox News news release, the network “marked its highest-rated year in primetime in its 22-year history with 2.5 million total viewers and finished the year as the most-watched basic cable network for the third consecutive year in both primetime and total day (1.4 million) among total viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research.”

In particular, Sean Hannity’s eponymous show dominated the landscape with 3.3 million viewers. “Hannity” finished as the top program in all of cable news.

In upscale cable rankings, or households with a total income in excess of $100,000, Fox News was tops in weekday viewing.

In terms of demographics, Fox News captured virtually all of the most important age groups.

It was No. 1 in the 25-54 and 35-64 age demographics, and in the much-coveted 18-49 demographic, Fox News was “only slightly behind” ESPN.

“Tucker Carlson Tonight,” “Hannity” and “The Ingraham Angle” constituted three of the top four programs in the 18-49 demographic.

“FOX News continues to outperform other basic cable networks, proving once again that our news coverage and premiere team of journalists and opinion hosts are the best in the business,” Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott and President Jay Wallace said in a joint statement. “With the recent launch of FOX Nation, an increased focus on digital and the strong ratings momentum we have built, we are confident that 2019 will offer our loyal viewers even more ways to engage with FOX News.”

Just as important as its weekday dominance, Fox News made sure to point out the ways in which the network demolished its cable news rivals on the weekends as well.

“On the weekends, FNC continued to dominate CNN and MSNBC, beating them in every hour in total viewers on Saturdays and Sundays from 6AM to 11PM/ET,” Fox News said.

The network “even outperformed combined viewership of CNN and MSNBC in key timeslots” over the weekend. That’s not just beating the competition, that’s jogging backward and still lapping your rivals.

Aside from cable, Fox News also boasted some mighty impressive digital numbers. Fox News reached “unprecedented numbers in uniques, page views, media initiatives and time spent, according to Adobe Analytics,” the news release said.

“From April 2018 to August 2018, FOXNews.com surpassed CNN for the #1 in page views and from June 2018 to September 2018, the website surpassed both NYTimes.com and WashingtonPost.com for the #2 rankings in unique audiences,” it said.

As mentioned above, Fox News has had about as tumultuous a 2018 as its peers.

The key difference is that, unlike CNN and MSNBC, Fox News seems to be thriving in the chaos.

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