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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

ConocoPhillips is buying Concho Resources in a $9.7 billion all-stock deal that provides a stark sign of how the pandemic is prompting new consolidation, they announced Monday.

Why it matters: It's the largest deal yet in the U.S. oil patch since the COVID-19 crisis, which has sharply cut demand and sent prices downward.

What they're saying: The companies said the deal will provide $500 in annual savings by 2022. They said their combined resource base is competitive even at modest oil prices.

The big picture: The combined company "will be one of the dominant operators in the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico, rivaling only the likes of Occidental Petroleum Corp. and Chevron Corp. in terms of crude output," Bloomberg notes.

Catch up fast: It follows Chevron's deal to buy the big independent Noble Energy announced in July (which also provided Chevron new gas assets in the Mediterranean Sea).

And oil-and-gas producers Devon Energy and WPX Energy announced a merger in late September.

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
Nov 10, 2020 - Economy & Business

The winners and losers in the market's vaccine rally

Reproduced from Charles Schwab; Chart: Axios Visuals

Risk assets had a very good day on Monday, but U.S. stock performance was mixed after news that a COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer and BioNTech could be distributed to millions of people before the end of the month.

Why it matters: Beyond just stocks, Monday's market moves clearly reflected investor enthusiasm and a market pricing in a return to pre-pandemic life that will benefit risk at the expense of safety.

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Key government agency says Biden transition can formally begin

General Services Administrator Emily Murphy. Photo: Alex Edelman/CNP/Getty Images

General Services Administrator Emily Murphy said in a letter to President-elect Joe Biden on Monday that she has determined the transition from the Trump administration can formally begin.

Why it matters: Murphy, a Trump appointee, had come under fire for delaying the so-called "ascertainment" and withholding the funds and information needed for the transition to begin while Trump's legal challenges played out.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: Key information about the effective COVID-19 vaccines — Oxford and AstraZeneca's vaccine won't just go to rich countries.
  2. Health: U.S. coronavirus hospitalizations keep breaking recordsWhy we're numb to 250,000 deaths.
  3. World: England to impose stricter regional systemU.S. hotspots far outpacing Europe's — Portugal to ban domestic travel for national holidays.
  4. Economy: The biggest pandemic labor market drags.
  5. Sports: Coronavirus precautions leave college basketball schedule in flux.