Fox News Channel ended 2016 as the most-watched cable network in primetime for the first time in its history, according to Nielsen. Bolstered by its coverage of the 2016 presidential campaign, Fox News topped last year’s ratings champion ESPN by posting a 51% increase over its 2015 numbers, according to Nielsen.
Among adults 18-49, ESPN was tops with its live sports-event programming. Despite its win, ESPN posted a 12% year-to-year decline within the advertiser-coveted demo — in fact all but one network ranked within the top 10 posted declining audience numbers in the demo compared to 2015.
And cable television shows dominated Nielsen’s list of the top time-shifted programs for the year, which illustrates the percentage difference between audiences watching shows same day and over a seven-day period. AMC, FX and Bravo programming secured more than half of the top 10 slots, according to Nielsen.