GE and Baker Hughes merger, surprise profit improvements, and Alabama pipeline explosion capture this week's headlines.

1. GE, Baker Hughes to Combine Oil, Gas Businesses

The deal comes nearly six months after Baker Hughes' previous merger agreement with rival Halliburton collapsed following a regulatory fight with the U.S. government. (USA Today)

2. Shell, BP Earnings Benefit from Cost Cuts Amid Weak Oil Prices

The companies posted surprise improvements in third-quarter profits, joining other big oil companies in showing progress in efforts to adapt to a world of cheaper crude as prices rebounded from lows hit at the start of the year. (Wall Street Journal)

3. US Gasoline Jumps Most Since 2008 After Pipeline Blast

Gasoline in New York jumped the most in almost eight years, and its premium to crude prices soared 60 percent after an explosion and fire in Alabama shut the largest fuel pipeline in the U.S., killing one person and injuring more. (Bloomberg)