NBCU Dominates C3 Ratings During Its Fab February

A programmer can’t be more dominant than NBCUniversal ways during February, according to an breakdown of Nielsen’s C3 ratings by analyst Michael Nathanson of MoffettNathanson Research.

With an unprecedented combination of the Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics, NBC’s broadcast delivery in prime time was up 324% among adults 18 to 49.

By contrast, CBS was down 38%, ABC fell 43% and Fox dropped 82%.

On cable NBCU was the only group to show an increase, rising 2%. Discovery came in second with a 8% decline. All other cable programmers were down in the teens except for AMC Networks, which pulled 36% decline.

Related: C3 Dropped 7% During January, Analyst Says

“Did you ever wonder what would happen if one network aired the Super Bowl and The Winter Olympics in the same month?  Well, we just found out and the results were startling.  With the Super Bowl and the Olympics, NBC dominated the month and clouded the conclusions on underlying trends elsewhere,” Nathanson said in his report Tuesday.

Overall, C3 ratings, which are used to negotiate TV advertising buys, were down 6% in primetime.

Broadcast, powered by NBC’s Olympics, was up 4%. Cable was down12%.

Cable’s primetime decrease of 12% continued a 5-month streak of double-digit declines in ratings, Nathanson noted. Since the start of 2017, cable has declined by double digits in 10 out of the past 14 months, he said.

Among the cable networks, NBCSN posted the biggest gain. Other gainers included BET, TLC, MSNBC, A&E and VH1. ESPN was flat..

The biggest declines among cable networks were registered by AMC, Nick at Night, Adult Swim, Nickelodeon and HGTV.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.