Equinor CEO Eldar Sætre. Photo: Vidar Ruud/AFP/Getty Images

Oil-and-gas giant Equinor posted a $4.8 billion third-quarter profit on Thursday morning, roughly double the amount from the same period last year.

Why it matters: The results from the multinational oil giant formerly known as Statoil show how the industry is reaping the benefits from higher oil prices even though their haul was slightly below analysts' forecasts.

The intrigue: The Norwegian company said it's cutting $1 billion from its 2018 capital spending levels, bringing them down to $10 billion thanks to what the company called "capital discipline and efficient project execution."

  • Via the Financial Times, the move is "likely to soothe investor fears that costs will start to head substantially higher following the oil price recovery to above $75 per barrel."

What's next: Companies including ExxonMobil, Shell, BP and Chevron report their earnings next week.

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Updated 17 mins ago - World

At least 100 killed, much of Beirut destroyed in massive explosion

Photo: Anwar Amro/AFP via Getty Images

A major explosion Beirut, Lebanon has killed at least 100 people and injured over 4,000, according to the Lebanese Red Cross.

Driving the news: Prime Minister Hassan Diab said the explosions occurred at a warehouse that had been storing 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate for over six years.

Biden confidants see VP choices narrowing to Harris and Rice

Photos: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images; Win McNamee/Getty Images

Confidants of Joe Biden believe his choices for vice president have narrowed to Sen. Kamala Harris and Susan Rice — and would be surprised if he picks anyone else.

The state of play: This is a snapshot of the nearly unanimous read that we get from more than a dozen people close to him.

An election like no other

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The coronavirus will make the 2020 presidential election different from any in modern history: Voting that begins earlier, results that take longer, mail carriers as virtual poll workers and October Surprises that pop in September.

The big picture: Perhaps 80 million Americans will vote early, by mail or in person, Tom Bonier, CEO of TargetSmart, a Democratic political data firm, tells Axios. That's going to set up more of an Election Season than an Election Day — and increase the odds of national turmoil over the vote count.