It's a happy New Year's Eve for ABC in the ratings

By the Associated Press | January 4, 2012 | 2:16 PM EST

NEW YORK (AP) — ABC rang in the new year with robust ratings, crushing its rivals on New Year's Eve.

The Nielsen Co. says that with ABC's prime-time lineup Saturday night, the network finished a strong first with a total viewership of nearly 10 million viewers and beat CBS, Fox and NBC combined.

Then, in late-night on ABC, "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve" averaged a huge 22.6 million viewers.

Nielsen said Wednesday, for the week in prime time overall, CBS was on top, averaging 8 million viewers, followed by NBC, ABC and Fox.

NBC's "Nightly News" led the evening newscasts with an average of 8.7 million viewers.