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CBS WINS DAYTIME RATINGS RACE - AGAIN

Of late, CBS has been surging in the prime time ratings - and appears poised to make a serious run at the top next season.

Ho, hum, say the folks in charge of CBS' daytime schedule. Big deal.After all, they've finished first for the last two years - 117 weeks in a row, to be exact.

This past week was fairly typical, as CBS won the daytime ratings race by averaging a 5.5 rating and a 21 share. (A ratings point equals about 931,000 homes and a share is the percentage of homes actually watching TV tuned into a network.)

ABC was more than a full rating point behind with a 4.2/16, and NBC trailed badly with a 3.2/12.

CBS' soap opera "Young and the Restless" has an even longer winning streak than the network itself. It's been No. 1 for 126 consecutive weeks.

Also of note are the fading ratings of ABC's "General Hospital." Former executive producer Gloria Monty was brought back several months ago with a mandate to challenge "Y&R" with the then second-ranked "GH." But Monty's wholesale cast replacements and plot changes have had the opposite effect - "GH" was the No. 5 soap last week.

- DAYTIME TOP 10: 1. "Young and the Restless," CBS; 2. "NBA Playoff," NBC; 3. "The Price Is Right" (second half hour), CBS; 4. "As the World Turns," CBS; 5. "All My Children," ABC; 6. "Bold and the Beautiful," CBS; 7. "General Hospital," ABC; 8. "The Price Is Right (first half hour), CBS; 9. "Guiding Light," CBS; 10. "One Life to Live," ABC.

- SATURDAY MORNING: CBS won a narrow victory, averaging a 3.0/13 to ABC's 2.9/13. NBC was third with a 2.4/11 and Fox last with a 1.7/8.

As usual, CBS' "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" was the most popular Saturday morning show.

- MORNING NEWS: Nothing unusual here. "Good Morning America" was the most popular morning news show in America, winning last week with an average rating of 3.8 and an average share of 19.

"GMA's" winning streak now stretches to 74 weeks.

However, NBC will have you know that "Today" was just half a ratings point behind (3.3/17). That marks 13 weeks in a row that "Today" has been less than a point away from "GMA."

The struggling "CBS This Morning" trailed badly with a 2.2/11. (Once again proving that quality and ratings do not go hand-in-hand.)