Oil storage tanks sit at the Esso oil refinery, operated by Exxon Mobil Corp. Both companies managed to make a profit during the third quarter, bolstered by refining operations and chemical divisions that are helped by low oil prices. But the two biggest U.S. energy companies were forced to slash costs to stay ahead of plunging revenues from their oil-and-gas production businesses. Chevron, the second-largest energy company in the U.S. by revenue, said it would lay off between 6,000 and 7,000 employees. The San Ramon, Calif., company is trying to dial back its capital spending by 25% next year to between $25 billion and $28 billion. John Watson , Chevron’s chief executive, told analysts that job reductions would be concentrated in Australia as the company completes construction of two giant, liquefied natural-gas projects. Some cuts also will come from West Africa as Chevron reorganizes operations in Angola. Chevron also […]