Opinion US & Canada Television

FBN Prime-time Tops Ratings, CNBC Holds Daytime


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Fox Business Network has retained the top spot in the ratings for October 2019 in Prime-time, whilst CNBC held on to the top spot for live market coverage.

Fox Business shows such as Lou Dobbs Tonight and The Evening Edit with Elizabeth MacDonald were comfortably ahead of their counterparts on CNBC and Bloomberg.

Stuart Varney’s signature market-open program Varney & Co. averaged 243,000 total viewers compared to CNBC’s 220,000, once again making it the top markets program in the country for seven of the past 10 month this year.

Lou Dobbs’ eponymous evening program “Lou Dobbs Tonight” continued to dominate the category with 378,000 total viewers for the month of October, notching 42 consecutive months as the number one show in business television and 46 months, trouncing CNBC’s 7PM/ET hour. The program also delivered a 210 percent advantage over CNBC in its time-slot and saw an audience increase of 3 percent year over year.



In addition to Varney and Dobbs’ strong performances, FBN’s Business Day and post-market programming including After the Bell(4-5 PM/ET), CAVUTO: Coast to Coast (12-2 PM/ET), The Claman Countdown (3-4 PM/ET), The Evening Edit(6-7 PM/ET), Making Money with Charles Payne (2-3 PM/ET), and Trish Regan Prime-time (8-9 PM/ET) all nabbed placements among the 15 most-watched business programs in cable.

In the mainstay hours of a business channel however, the period from the opening bell through to the closing bell, CNBC fared better with 212,000 viewers over FBN’s 193,000 averages.

The pattern continues to clearly show a preference for CNBC’s live market coverage during the trading hours, but Fox Business Network’s out-of-hours analysis and opinion programming.

Editor’s Opinion

With a clear and evident trend, maintained over several years, CNBC might well be best advised sticking to serious market coverage, and not the jazzy analytical programming. It could well work in CNBC’s favour to air live markets coverage from its sister networks in Asia and Europe, leaving Fox Business to cater for those wanting the jazzy analytical programming that they are clearly better at producing.

Kevin Coy, Editor.