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TELEVISION & RADIO

Couric No. 1, with fewer viewers

September 08, 2006|From Times staff and wire reports

The audience for Katie Couric's second night as "CBS Evening News" anchor was 25% smaller than the first, but still a runaway No. 1 against its prime competition.

The Wednesday newscast attracted 10.1 million viewers, compared with 7.1 million for ABC's "World News" and 7 million for "NBC Nightly News." Couric's debut Tuesday night had attracted 13.6 million viewers.

Despite the drop, the second win was an encouraging sign for CBS, which had been mired in third place for years before her arrival. Wednesday's audience was 38% larger than one year earlier -- and 42% larger among the key news demographic of people aged 25 to 54.

NBC and ABC were both down 23% from a year ago in total viewership.

Most of the networks say it will take weeks or months before a true picture of new viewing habits emerge.

Couric spent 15 years as co-host of NBC's "Today" show before making the jump to CBS this year.

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