As Fortune notes, CNBC’s Nielsen ratings were up 19% in Q1, no doubt juiced by roiling markets. So why did did CNBC’s ratings for viewers aged 25 to 54 drop 18% during the same period?
That is: Where did CNBC’s young viewers go, and why did the oldsters flock to the channel in the last three months? We’ve parsed this question before, and can come up with no new explanations.
One thing it’s probably not: The result of any direct competition from Fox Business Network or Bloomberg TV. FBN is still a non-player (on TV at least) with some 10,000 average viewers (compared to CNBC’s average of 305,000). Bloomberg TV has more viewers than FBN, but doesn’t come close to CNBC’s 96 million-plus distribution.
Which is why CNBC can lose some of its younger audience, and still mint money. For a certain segment of advertisers, there’s nowhere else to go. SNL Kagan says CNBC made $333 million (operating income, we believe) in 2007, making it NBC U’s most-profitable cable network.
Question: does anyone watch Fox Business Network?
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