Fox dominates cable, MSNBC's Maddow gets best ratings since 2008

Fox dominates cable, MSNBC's Maddow gets best ratings since 2008

Fox News finished last week on top of all basic cable channels, at the same time as MSNBC's Rachel Maddow enjoyed her most-watched week since October of 2008, according to Nielsen Research. 

At a time when interest in the American political scene — and particularly the Trump administration — is skyrocketing, Fox News averaged 2.7 million primetime viewers to beat TNT, which averaged 1.99 million.

MSNBC finished third with an average 1.58 million primetime viewers, with "The Rachel Maddow Show" leading the way for the network with an average of 2.6 million viewers.

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HGTV and USA finished fourth and fifth, respectively, between 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. ET.

Fox's “The O’Reilly Factor” captured four of the top 10 cable telecasts in total viewers, finishing as the most-watched program on cable during the week of Feb. 13-18. 

On the business channel front, Fox Business Network was the most-watched business network in total day viewers for a fifth consecutive week, topping CNBC in both business day viewers and the key 25-54 demographic advertisers covet most.

The win marks the third time ever the network has topped CNBC in both viewers and the younger demographic for an entire week.

 CNBC announced in 2015 that it would no longer rely on Nielsen ratings to measure its daytime audience, turning to rival Cogent Reports instead.

 The financial network made the switch after complaining for years that Nielsen fails to track "out of home" viewing in locations such as airports, gyms, restaurants and offices.