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That $5,000 TV Ad May Run $100,000 Now for Political Conventions

  • CNN, Fox said to charge up to $100,000 for convention ads
  • Audience for presidential debates has been rising since 1996

The presidential primary season has been a ratings bonanza for cable-news outlets, and it can only get better when the major parties hold their nominating conventions next month. So why not seize the moment?

CNN is charging advertisers $40,000 to $100,000 for a 30-second spot during the Republican and Democratic conventions, compared with about $5,000 for a normal prime-time commercial, according to a person familiar with the matter. Fox News plans to charge similar rates, according to Ken Goldstein, a professor of politics at the University of San Francisco who analyzes polling and advertising for Bloomberg Politics. The cable networks declined to confirm the numbers.