News

Cable Tops B'cast in Primetime Again

12/26/2002 6:09 AM Eastern

December's third week was much like the month's first two relative to basic
cable topping the broadcast networks in primetime.

Basic cable averaged a 28.9 rating Dec. 16 through 22, a 4.3 percent rise
from its 27.7 collective rating recording during the daypart in the
corresponding week of 2001, according to a Cabletelevision Advertising Bureau
analysis of Nielsen Media Research data.

The industry's share improved 1.7 percent to a 49.0 from a 48.2, while
household delivery advanced 5.3 percent to nearly 30.8 million from 29.2
million.

By way of contrast, the seven broadcast networks' weighted gross in primetime
declined 5.6 percent last week to a 26.5, down from a 28.0 in the same week a
year ago. Broadcast's share slipped 8 percent to a 45.0, as delivery declined
4.3 percent to 28.3 million households.

Individually, only NBC scored a gain among the broadcasters, notching a 5.1
percent advance to a 6.2 household rating. CBS, Fox and Pax TV were flat at an
8.0, a 4.0 and a 0.9, respectively.

ABC sustained a 15.3 percent hit to a 6.1, while UPN was off 8 percent to a
2.3 rating and The WB Television Network decreased 8.7 percent to a 2.1 average
last week.

"Based on the past few weeks, cable will clearly be the dominant TV medium
for the entire holiday season and enter the new year with tremendous
audience-growth momentum," CAB president and CEO Joe Ostrow said in a prepared
statement.

"Consequently, advertisers can expect a continually growing return on their
cable investments in 2003," he added.

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The Times Center, New York, NY