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MSNBC leads Fox in Critical Demographic

The Murdoch boys have made major changes to Fox News Channels’ prime-time schedule and the ratings aren’t good – at all.

We now have the first set of ratings where a possible trend can be seen. The lineup as it stood Monday, May 8th has been in place for a week giving us a decent week-to-week comparison.

For those not familiar, here is the new FNC evening lineup as designed by Lachlan and James Murdoch:

Time SlotShow Name
4pYour World with Neil Cavuto
5pFox News Specialists
6pBrett Baier
7pThe Story with Martha MacCallum
8pTucker Carlson Tonight
9pThe Five
10pSean Hannity
11pTucker Carlson Tonight

The most important demographic to advertisers is the 25-54 age group. On May 1st, the first day of the new lineup, here were the numbers for the key group:

Time SlotShow NameRatings
4pYour World With Neil Cavuto312
5pFox News Specialists336
6pBrett Baier397
7pThe Story with Martha MacCallum332
8pTucker Carlson Tonight491
9pThe Five486
10pSean Hannity467
11pTucker Carlson Tonight383

Then on May 8th, we see what may be fading sentiment for some shows and certainly for those shows in their new time slots.

Time SlotShow NameRatings
4pYour World With Neil Cavuto299
5pFox News Specialists279
6pBrett Baier368
7pThe Story with Martha MacCallum362
8pTucker Carlson Tonight455
9pThe Five441
10pSean Hannity461
11pTucker Carlson Tonight313

Neil Cavuto and Sean Hannity faired the best in the comparison with only minor week-to-week drops. Martha MacCallum and the Five took more serious hits and the brand new “Fox News Specialists” got slaughtered.

MacCallum’s show will likely regain the share of viewers it had when it focused on Trump’s first 100 days. Her format is good for the 7 pm hour and she’s a an engaging host.

Moving “The Five” to 9 o’clock was a terrible decision. It’s not a good lead in for Hannity and won’t pull the same audience from Carlson’s more combative show. 5 pm was the perfect slot for that show and moving it may slate it for the scrap heap.

And now “Fox News Specialists”… It’s a mess. Today’s episode featured the architect of Obamacare and the author of “Clinton Cash” trying to score political points against each other while Kat Tempf played referee. I turned it off.

Bill O’Reilly was the anchor of the Fox News prime-time lineup and after being forced out by Rupert Murdoch’s sons, Fox is losing viewers in a key demographic. Guess who’s picking them up? It’s MSNBC. Here are their week-to-week numbers in the 25-54 demo:

Time SlotShow HostMay 1 RatingMay 8 Rating
5pMTP Daily177322

That’s a huge jump for every single timeslot. Granted, more ideologically conservative viewers aren’t going to go from Fox News to MSNBC, but the more important and malleable middle might. O’Reilly was perfect as the keystone. Not too forceful, not too easy. His knowledge left little room for opposition guests to maneuver and the friendlies always had their say, but not without a check.

When we compare May 8 ratings from both networks, it’s apparent that the Murdoch children have screwed the pooch, but it may be too late for daddy to administer a spanking.

Time SlotCompeting ShowsMay 8 MSNBC RatingMay 8 FNC Rating
4pLive v. Cavuto268299
5pMTP Daily v. Specialists322279
6pGreta v. Baier252368
7pMathews v. MacCallum344362
8pHayes v. Carlson416455
9pMaddow v. The Five585441
10pO'Donnell v. Hannitry460461
11pWilliams v. Carlson repeat322313

MSNBC is now closing fast on the 4p timeslot and has grabbed the lead in the 5p, 6p times. Martha is barely holding on in the 7p timeslot, but she’ll likely hold on there. 8 pm is on the verge of being lost to the crazy Mika network while 9 pm is all Maddow’s. Late night news .. is MSNBC’s for the taking.

Rupert’s kids may have brought about the death of a once great news network. But only time will tell.

We mustn’t forget that Fox (NASDAQ: FOX) is a publicly held company and it won’t be long until shareholders demand blood if this trend continues.

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Rich Mitchell

Rich Mitchell is the editor-in-chief of Conservative Daily News and the president of Bald Eagle Media, LLC. His posts may contain opinions that are his own and are not necessarily shared by Bald Eagle Media, CDN, staff or .. much of anyone else. Find him on twitter, facebook and

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  1. “Moving ‘The Five’ to 9 o’clock was a terrible decision.”

    Amen. No truer thing has ever been said or written. It needs to come back to 5pm and move “The Specialists” to 9pm.

    The changes are terrible. I haven’t watched FNC for 5 days now — not a boycott, but I just haven’t been interested. They have probably lost me as a viewer.

    1. Amen !! Our TV flips channels or off for same reason….The Murddock brothers are on a slippery slope

      1. Some years ago, British papers often wrote about the sons & their girlfriends/wives. At the time I thought, oh-oh, these kids are Socialism/Communism 101–what did Rupert raise?? Since I haven’t watched FNC for 9 years, I’ll just say I hope they fail. Sad how filled with White Guilt the entire world has become.

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