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For more than 30 years, John Kiesewetter has been the source for information about all things in local media — comings and goings, local people appearing on the big or small screen, special programs, and much more. Contact John at

WXIX-TV Wins Early, Afternoon And 10 p.m. Ratings

Courtesy WXIX-TV

The demographic ratings are in – which TV stations use to sell advertising – showing WXIX-TV winning most weekday newscasts, and WLWT-TV winning at 11 pm., during February sweeps.

At 6 p.m., the picture isn't so clear: WLWT-TV and WKRC-TV tied for the most viewers ages 25-54, the target sought by most advertisers.

Credit Courtesy WXIX-TV
WXIX-TV's 10 p.m. anchor team (from left): sports anchor Joe Danneman, news anchors Rob Williams and Tricia Macke, and chief meteorologist Steve Horstmeyer.

Ratings for the prime money demographic shed a different light on Tri-State viewing compared to the household ratings released immediately after sweeps. WKRC-TV has boasted that it was the "most watched news in the Tri-State" in household ratings during the four-week survey, Feb. 4 to March 3. As I've said for years, household ratings give a station bragging rights – but adults 25-54 are the lifeblood of the TV business.

In the 25-54 demo, Fox 19 was first for news at 5 a.m.; at 6 a.m.; at 7-9 a.m. (against network newscasts); at 9-11 a.m.; at 4 p.m.; and at 5 p.m. Fox 19 also was first 10-11 p.m. with a 2.1 rating in the demo. 

The demos also delivered good news for WLWT, which grew its audience at 5 p.m. (into a second place tie with WKRC-TV) and at 6 p.m. (into a tie with WKRC-TV). WCPO-TV was fourth for both of those local newscasts.

Credit Courtesy WLWT-TV
Husband-wife Sheree Paollelo and Mike Dardis are WLWT-TV's main late news anchors.

At 11 p.m., WLW-TV again was first with a 1.6 rating, followed by WXIX-TV, WKRC-TV and WCPO-TV in the demo. A year ago, WLWT-TV and WKRC-TV tied for first with a 1.8 rating, followed by WXIX-TV and WCPO-TV.

However, WXIX-TV can boast that its 2.1 rating at 10-11 p.m. gives it a bigger late news audience with adults 25-54 than the viewership than any local 11 p.m. newscast.  Local 12's half-hour 10 p.m. news on WSTR-TV was fifth in the time period, and WLWT-TV's half-hour news on MeTV was sixth.

"I'm grateful to the viewers in the Tri-State for recognizing the hard work of our staff and journalists. It confirms what we’ve thought all along; that Fox 19 Now is the first choice for local news for many Tri-State viewers," says Debbie Bush, vice president and general manager. WXIX-TV broadcasts 11 hours of news every weekday, more than any other Cincinnati station.

WLWT-TV also was second 5-7 a.m. in the money demographic.

WKRC-TV also was third for news at 5 a.m.; fourth at 6 a.m.; second at 4 p.m.; and third at 11 p.m. in the demo.

WCPO-TV was fourth at 5 a.m.; third at 6 a.m.; third at 4 p.m.; and fourth at 5-p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m.

John Kiesewetter, who has covered television and media for more than 35 years, has been working for Cincinnati Public Radio and WVXU-FM since 2015.