“Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (8306.TO) Monday said it agreed to raise an offer to buy out minority shareholders in California unit UnionBanCal Corp. (UB) by 17% in a move to quickly win over dissident independent directors as it prepares the ground for fresh acquisitions in the U.S.,” according to CNN Money.
The dollar finally fell today, over 0.5% against the euro, after its value increased over the past two weeks. “Concerns about the euro zone's growth prospects persist, however, which could put further pressure on the continental currency,” Forbes reports.
Michael Phelps made history this weekend by securing his record-breaking eighth gold medal, but now his attention and that of his agent turns to marketing. While Phelps may have the potential to garner the marketing fame of Michael Jordan or Tiger Woods, “the window for marketing Olympians—even those with the rising stature of Mr. Phelps—can close fast,” according to The Wall Street Journal.
A poll indicates that Poland’s support for the missile defense plan with the United States jumped after Russia took military action against Georgia. A Russian general had said, “Poland was exposing itself to attack—even a nuclear one—by accepting the missile base,” according to the Associated Press, and in response Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski said, “If Russia threatens Poland, then we Poles have the right to feel threatened.”
“Muslim separatist rebels killed at least 28 civilians and three soldiers Monday in a series of pre-dawn attacks in the restive southern Philippines, witnesses and officials said,” according to Agence France-Presse.
Pervez Musharraf resigned as the president of Pakistan this morning on national television. He would have faced impeachment proceedings later this week. “It is likely that Musharraf stepped down as a part of a western-mediated deal between the president and the coalition government according to which all charges against him will be dropped in return for his resignation,” according to The Guardian.
“Tens of thousands of Muslims waving green and black protest flags gathered in Indian Kashmir's main city Monday for a march to U.N. offices demanding freedom from India and intervention by the world body,” according to the Associated Press.
A summit of South African leaders this weekend failed to forge a power sharing agreement in Zimbabwe. AllAfrica.com writes, “Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Morgan Tsvangirai made it clear that disagreements over how to split power between the MDC and Zanu-PF, which has ruled for 28 years, were blocking a settlement.”
According to Reuters, “Iran said on Monday it was ready to help fellow Muslim states launch satellites into orbit after it successfully put a dummy satellite into orbit—a move that may increase Western suspicions over its atomic ambitions.”
Ill. Sen. Barack Obama is likely to choose his vice presidential running mate this week, the Associated Press reports. “Top contenders for the vice presidential spot were Evan Bayh, a middle-of-the-road Indiana senator with an extensive Democratic pedigree; Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, who leads a Republican-leaning state that Obama needs to put in his column in the Nov. 4 election, and long-serving Delaware Senator Joseph Biden, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee who undertook a weekend trip to Russian-occupied Georgia.”
Obama and Ariz. Sen. John McCain sparred over the meaning of “rich” on Saturday night when the two spoke with Pastor Rick Warren. “Economists said in interviews Sunday that neither candidate was wrong because there are no agreed-upon definitions for the terms that describe income segments,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
CNN reports that, “The center of Tropical Storm Fay made landfall over Florida's Key West on Monday afternoon, and forecasters said the storm could strengthen into a hurricane before reaching the state's southwestern coast."
Police in Hawaii arrested 23 people for an incident in which a pro-sovereignty group broke into a former royal palace and the leader planned to chain himself to the throne. He was unable to find the throne, however, because he was unfamiliar with the palace.
“The most anticipated event of the Beijing Games ended stunningly and prematurely Monday morning when China’s most popular athlete, Liu Xiang, limped off the track with an Achilles’ tendon injury and withdrew from the 110-meter hurdles, ending any chance to defend the gold medal he won four years ago,” The New York Times wrote.
“Tropic Thunder,” starring and directed by Ben Stiller, has surpassed “The Dark Night” at the box office after its reign of more than a month at No. 1. “Tropic Thunder” pulled in $26 million, even though it has generated controversy over its use of the word “retard.”
Actor and talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres married Portia de Rossi this weekend in California. “DeGeneres, 50, and de Rossi, 35, have been an item (not to mention paparazzi magnets and an adorable red-carpet couple) since December 2004,” according to E Online, and Ellen announced the wedding when the California Supreme Court ruled against the gay marriage ban in May.