Fox News takes biggest bite out of basic cable in July, including 'Shark Week'

Discovery’s “Shark Week” couldn’t take a bite out of Fox News during the month of July, as FNC finished as the most-watched network in all of cable for the 25th straight month by averaging 1.4 million total viewers.

In addition, Fox News topped CNN and MSNBC as the most-watched cable news network for the 199th straight month, prevailing in both primetime and total day viewers.

MSNBC, HGTV, USA and The History Channel joined Fox News among the top five most-watched basic cable networks during the primetime hours of 8-11 p.m., while Discovery finished sixth despite its highly touted “Shark Week.” Fox News, Nickelodeon, MSNBC, HGTV and Investigation Discovery were the five most-watched networks for the month among total day viewers. CNN did not crack the top five in either category.

Fox News averaged 2.4 million primetime viewers, compared to 1.7 million for MSNBC and only 891,000 for CNN. Fox News’ total day average viewership of 1.4 million eclipsed its cable news rivals, as MSNBC averaged 921,000 viewers and CNN averaged an audience of 638,000 during the month of July.

The much publicized 30th anniversary of “Shark Week” averaged 1.7 million viewers, while “Hannity” averaged 3.4 million total viewers.

“Hannity” finished July as the most-watched show on cable news, followed by “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show,” “The Ingraham Angle” and “The Five.” The most-watched CNN program was “Cuomo Prime Time,” which finished No. 23 overall behind a variety of FNC and MSNBC shows.

Among the key demographic of adults aged 25-54, “Hannity” also finished atop cable news viewership. “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” “The Rachel Maddow Show,” “The Ingraham Angle” and “The Five” rounded out the top five demo programs for the month.

Brian Flood covers the media for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter at @briansflood.