ABC is Late-Night’s Most-Watched Net for the 2013 May Sweep

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via press release:


ABC is Late-Night’s No. 1 Network in Total Viewers for the 2013 May Sweep


ABC Wins the 2012-13 Season in Late-Night in Total Viewers and

Adults 18-49, With More Weekly Victories than Either CBS or NBC


ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” Closes 2012-13 with its Three Biggest-Ever Sweeps


2012-13 Season Finishes as “JKL’s” Most-Watched Season Ever


 “Nightline” Improves ABC’s Performance in Total Viewers Versus
May 2012 and Draws its Largest May Sweep Audience in 11 Years


ABC Late-Night (Monday – Friday)

With its late-night lineup of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” at 11:35 p.m. and “Nightline” at 12:35 a.m., ABC ranked as the most-watched network in late-night during the 2013 May sweep (2.238 million). In fact, ABC has won 2 of the 3 sweep periods of the 2012-13 broadcast season in Total Viewers (May ’13 and November ’12).


  • ABC outperformed CBS in two sweeps of 2012-13 in Total Viewers (May ’13 and November ’12) and in each of the three sweeps of the season in Adults 18-49. ABC beat CBS in late-night during the May sweep by 7% in Viewers (2.238 million vs. 2.094 million), and scored its largest advantage of the season over CBS with young adults (+18% – 750,000 vs. 636,000).


  • ABC drew a larger overall audience in late-night than NBC (2.238 million vs. 2.223 million) in all 3 sweeps of the 2012-13 season.


For the complete 2012-13 broadcast season, ABC was the No. 1 network in late-night in Total Viewers for the 2nd season in a row (2.370 million) and in Adults 18-49 (784,000), beating CBS (2.269 million and 711,000) and NBC (2.199 million and 742,000).


  • ABC won 21 of the 35 weeks of the season in Total Viewers (versus 8 for CBS and 6 for NBC) and 25 weeks among Adults 18-49 (versus 3 for CBS and 7 for NBC), more than doubling the combined wins of NBC and CBS with young adults.


“Jimmy Kimmel Live” (M-F 11:35 p.m.)

During the recently completed 2013 May sweep, ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” pulled in its 2nd-largest overall audience for any sweep period (2.505 million), behind only the 2013 February sweep. In fact, “JKL” has attracted its three biggest sweep audiences ever during the 2012-13 broadcast season (February ’13, May ’13 and November ’12, respectively). In addition, building over the year-ago May sweep for the 4th year in a row in Total Viewers (+31% – 2.505 million vs. 1.916 million), “JKL” delivered its most-watched May ever. “JKL” also grew over May ‘12 by 19% in Adults 18-49 (843,000 vs. 710,000) to its strongest May sweep in 6 years – since May 2007.


  • ABC’s “JKL” outperformed CBS’ “The Late Show with David Letterman” in Adults 18-49 for the first time ever during any sweep period, holding an 8% lead over the CBS program (843,000 vs. 783,000).


  • In Total Viewers, “JKL” paced within 300,000 viewers from “Letterman” (2.505 million vs. 2.811 million), slashing three-quarters of its gap with “Letterman” versus its gap during the year-ago May sweep (-75%), as more than 1 million viewers separated the two programs last year. In addition, after marking its closest finish ever with “Letterman” in February ’13 (-789,000 viewers), “JKL” further narrowed the gap with the CBS talk show in May ’13 (-306,000 viewers).


  • For the 2nd straight sweep, “JKL” beat “Letterman” in Adults 18-34, increasing its advantage over the CBS late-night program to 15% in May (280,000 vs. 244,000) from 9% in February.


For the complete 2012-13 broadcast season, ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” marked its most-watched season ever (2.323 million), surpassing its previous high by 29% in Total Viewers (1.797 million).


“Nightline” (M-F 12:35 a.m.)

During the May 2013 Sweep, ABC News’ “Nightline” attracted 1.664 million Total Viewers, 708,000 Adults 25-54 and 550,000 Adults 18-49, according to Nielsen Media Research. “Nightline” outdelivered CBS’ “The Late Late Show” during the May 2013 sweep across all key target demos: Total Viewers (+261,000), Adults 25-54 (+54,000) and Adults 18-49 (+66,000).


“Nightline” was up versus the previous sweep in Total Viewers (+2%) and Adults 18-49 (+4%) – 1.630 million and 531,000 for February 2013.


Compared to ABC’s performance in the time period during the year-ago sweep (1.623 million on May 2012), “Nightline” was up by 3% in Total Viewers. In fact, “Nightline” posted the Net’s largest May sweep audience in the time slot in 11 years – since May 2002.  



Late-Night (2013 May Sweep):  TOTAL VIEWERS  A18-49(000)

ABC                             2,238,000      750,000

CBS                            2,094,000      636,000

NBC                            2,223,000      757,000


Late-Night (2012-13 Season)TOTAL VIEWERS  A18-49(000)

ABC                             2,370,000      784,000

CBS                             2,269,000      711,000

NBC                             2,199,000      742,000



Source: The Nielsen Company, Most Current National Program Ratings for 2013 May sweep (4/25/13-5/22/13), 2012 May sweep (4/26/12-5/22/12), 2012-13 season (9/24/12-5/22/13) and 2011-12 season (9/19/11-5/23/12). 2012-13 season based on regular telecasts and breakout telecasts for w/o 10/29/12; all other breakout telecasts and specials excluded. Comparisons based on 000s.


ABC Late-Night = “JKL” and “Nightline”; CBS Late-Night = “Late Show” and “Ferguson”; NBC Late-Night = “Tonight Show,” “Fallon” and “Carson Daly.”


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