Keith Olbermann's January MSNBC Exit Results in Recent Ratings Drop

12:15 PM PST 02/21/2011 by David Ciminelli
Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Figures for Lawrence O'Donnell's "The Last Word," which replaced "Countdown With Keith Olbermann," are down 10 percent from results for the same time a year ago.

The impact from Keith Olbermann's January exit from MSNBC is beginning to be felt at the cable news channel. Ratings for Lawrence O'Donnell's The Last Word, which replaced Countdown With Keith Olbermann, are down approximately 10 percent from results for the same time a year ago when Olbermann was in the coveted 8 p.m. time slot. O'Donnell's ratings are also down 22% from Olbermann's performance in the fourth quarter of 2010, reports the New York Times. Both ratings drops are within the viewer age range of 25 and 54, which is the ideal target market for news programs.

Part of the ratings dent is due to Olbermann's younger fans abandoning the time slot after his exit. (Interestingly, ratings for MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show at 9 p.m. have not changed since the Countdown host's departure.)

There is some good news, however, for O'Donnell: The Last Word has garnered slightly more total viewers than Olbermann had during the same weeks last year, but still five percent lower than the previous MSNBC host's Q4 results.

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