Nov 1, 2018

Shell reports $5.6 billion in Q3 profits

Photo: Ali Balikci/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Shell's profit surged to $5.6 billion in the third quarter, up from $4.1 billion in the same period last year, the oil-and-gas giant announced today.

Why it matters: The haul is the latest sign of how the rise in crude oil prices is boosting the fortunes of the industry, although Shell didn't hit analysts' forecasts.

  • Shell said higher oil, gas and LNG prices, as well as money from its gas trading unit, were behind the rise.
  • But those gains were partly offset by factors including lower margins in refining and "adverse currency exchange effects."

Where it stands: The company used the report to say it's rewarding investors by increasing its share buybacks to $2.5 billion between now and late January.

  • That's up from $2 billion in the prior phase of the program that envisions $25 billion in buybacks by the end of 2020.

What's next: Exxon and Chevron, the largest U.S.-based majors, will report their Q3 results on Friday morning.

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Coronavirus updates: CDC monitoring 4 presumptive positive cases in western U.S.

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

State public health authorities are monitoring four new presumptive positive cases of the novel coronavirus as of late Friday evening, per the CDC. California is evaluating a second possible instance of community spread as Oregon announced its first possible case. Washington state has two presumptive cases, only one of which is likely travel-related.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,900 people and infected more than 85,000 others in over 60 countries and territories outside the epicenter in mainland China. The number of new cases reported outside China now exceed those inside the country.

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Don't panic

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The stock market is heading south with unprecedented velocity. Does that mean it's crashing? Are we in a recession? Is this a financial crisis?

No, no, and no.

Sanders' big socialism rebrand

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Bernie Sanders is trying to rebrand socialism in the U.S., but he'll have to overcome common fears about what the word means — fears the Trump campaign is watching and waiting to exploit.

Why it matters: Sanders may face a major challenge in convincing Americans in their 40s or older that there's a meaningful difference between what he supports, described as democratic socialism, and the authoritarian socialism that we've seen in regimes like Venezuela.