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Kathie Lee Gifford No Boon to Today's Fourth Hour

Kathie Lee Gifford returned to daytime TV this month as co-host of Today’s fourth hour, but the response so far seems to be a collective yawn.

In the week ending April 20, Today’s fourth hour posted a 1.5 rating/6 share weighted metered-market household average, according to Nielsen Media Research. That’s down 12% from week one, which ended April 13, the first full week in which the hour was co-hosted by Gifford and Hoda Kotb.

The pair replaced Today anchors Natalie Morales and Ann Curry, who had been doing extended duty.

Hour four of Today was also down 17% from last year’s time-period average of 1.8/6 and down 25% from its lead-in, which is Today’s third hour in most markets.

In New York -- the No. 1 DMA and the market where Gifford got her start in 1985 on Disney-ABC’s Live with Regis and Kathie Lee (now Live with Regis and Kelly) -- the show averaged a 1.1/5 for the week ended April 20. That’s down 21% in the market from week one and down 27% from last year, when WNBC was airing NBC Universal’s Martha Stewart in the 10 a.m. hour. It’s also 54% less than what CBS’ Rachael Ray, the time-period leader, does in the hour on rival WABC at a 2.4/10.

Paige Albiniak
Paige Albiniak

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.