Sweeping Up in LA

KABC was the winner, but KCBS is making a move in the LA ratings for February. 

The LA Times writes that KABC, owned by Walt Disney Co., retained its local news dominance at 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. during the February ratings period, according to recently released Nielsen ratings. The local ABC station attracted nearly 328,000 viewers for its weeknight 6 p.m. newscast and nearly 250,000 viewers at 11 p.m.

Univision Communications Inc.'s KMEX-TV Channel 34, the Spanish-language station leader, remained the No. 2 outlet in Los Angeles for the two evening newscasts. KMEX's 6 p.m. news program attracted 242,150 viewers, while its 11 p.m. program drew an average audience of nearly 223,000 viewers in February.

KCBS, meanwhile, increased its viewership 12% on weeknights to solidify its position as the third-ranked station in the market for its late local news. The station, which benefits from CBS' strong prime-time lineup, attracted 211,000 viewers weeknights at 11 p.m., ahead of KNBC-TV Channel 4, which attracted 177,463 viewers.

The 11 p.m. ratings race tightened last month between KABC, KNBC and KCBS among viewers age 25 to 54, the demographic that advertisers prefer for news programs.

February marked the first time in more than 20 years that KCBS has turned in such a competitive performance at 11 p.m., station executives said. The last time KCBS generated such competitive ratings among the 25 to 54 group was in 1994, when CBS aired the Lillehammer Winter Olympics in prime time.

"We are extremely proud of these February results and the longer-term trends that show we are continuing to grow the audience for our newscasts," Steve Mauldin, general manager of CBS Channel 2 and KCAL-TV Channel 9.

KCAL, also owned by CBS Corp., attracted the largest audience for a 10 p.m. newscast with 167,000 viewers on weeknights. It outranked news programs on Tribune Media Co.'s KTLA Channel 5 and Fox's KTTV Channel 11.