The early returns of the local ratings are in from the November sweeps, and as usual there are a wide variety of winners and losers.

KSL-Ch. 5, as usual, was a clear winner in the 10 p.m. news contest. However, Ch. 5, KUTV-Ch. 2 and KTVX-Ch. 4 all experienced ratings declines from November 1993.According to the A.C. Nielsen Co., KSL pulled a 19 rating and a 34 share at 10 p.m. to KUTV's 12/22 and KTVX's 11/20 - but each of the three newscasts declined 1 rating point and 3 share points from a year earlier.

(A rating point equals 1 percent of the approximately 630,000 TV-equipped households in the Salt Lake television market; a share point is 1 percent of those actually watching TV at any one time.)

Among key demographic groups (men and women ages 18-49 and 25-54), Ch. 2 and Ch. 5 were down 1-2 rating points in all four groups. KTVX was down a point in three of the four, holding steady in the other.

Ch. 5 finished first in all four groups, beating second-place Ch. 2 by 3-6 rating points. Ch. 2 beat third-place Ch. 4 by 1-2 rating points in three of the four groups; the two tied among men 25-54.

Those missing 10 p.m. news viewers didn't all stop watching TV. A lot of them switched to "Star Trek: The Next Generation" on KSTU. Ch. 13 went from a 2/3 in that time period in November 1993 to a 7/14 - and from 1 ratings among the key demographics to ratings of 5 and 6.

As to Ch. 13's 9 p.m. newscast, the folks at Fox garnered a 5/9 - the same household numbers as last year, and down 1 rating point among men 18-49 and men 25-54. That should bring at least a temporary end to that "Utah's fastest growing newscast" tagline.

Although KSL is on top at 10 p.m., its new 6 a.m. newscast is on the bottom. KUTV finished first in the early morning news with a 5/37 (up 1 rating point). KTVX was second with a 3/26 (up 1 rating point and 8 share points).

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And KSL was third with a 2/17 - although that's 1 rating point and 11 share points better than Ch. 5 did at 6 a.m. last November with "CBS This Morning."

Ch. 5 had more to be happy about in the early evening news, with its 6 p.m. broadcast up 1 rating point and 1 share point to a 12/23 - showing surprising growth among men demographics - and making it the most-watched early newscast.

The ranking of the other early evening newscasts goes like this: KTVX-Ch. 4 at 5:30 p.m. (11/24, down from a 12/29); KUTV-Ch. 2 at 5 p.m. (8/20, up from a 7/19) and KSL-Ch. 5 at 6:30 p.m. (8/16, down from a 9/18); and KUTV at 6 p.m. (7/14, down from a 7/15).

For the first time, Ch. 2's 5 p.m. broadcast beat its 6 p.m. broadcast in both ratings and shares.

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