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Tickers: Oct. 14


The second annual Iowa Hunger Summit will take place today alongside World Food Prize activities. Gov. Chet Culver will preside over a “hunger luncheon” at noon, at which guests will be served meals that represent Iowa-based programs for alleviating child and family hunger. Eric Schockman, national anti-hunger advocate and president of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, will give the keynote address. Other events will focus on issues related to hunger and take place throughout the day. The event is free and open to the public. Learn more at www.iowahungersummit.org.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. has invested $9 billion in Morgan Stanley, giving it a 21 percent stake in the company, the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal reported. Mitsubishi has bought $7.8 billion of perpetual non-cumulative convertible preferred stock with a 10 percent dividend and a conversion price of $25.25 per share, and $1.2 billion of perpetual non-cumulative non-convertible preferred stock with a 10 percent dividend. According to The Wall Street Journal, negotiations between the two companies were tenuous last week, but Mitsubishi was encouraged to move forward when the U.S. government said it was prepared to protect the Japanese investment. Mitsubishi is Japan’s largest financial group and the world’s second-largest bank holding company, with $1.1 trillion in bank deposits.

Deere & Co. shares jumped 11.4 percent to $42.45 yesterday on news that large agricultural equipment was still in high demand in September, the Associated Press reported. Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst Robert McCarthy said in an investor note yesterday that row-crop tractor sales were up 60 percent in September compared with the year-ago period and four-wheel-drive tractor sales more than doubled. Sales of combines also grew 58 percent. Deere’s stock price is still far below its 52-week high of $94.89.

Meredith Corp. has signed multiple leasing agreements to extend its Parents, More and Diabetic Living brands to seven international regions, bringing the company’s global reach to 40 countries. The new agreements will bring Parents magazine to Turkey, Brazil and the Middle East/North Africa; More to Thailand and a French version to Canada; and Diabetic Living to Mexico and Italy. Meredith Chief Development Officer John Zieser said the company plans to look for more alliances that will help its brands reach more consumers.

Cedar Rapids-based Rockwell Collins Inc. plans to shut down its Miami service center and fire the 60 employees who work on in-flight entertainment equipment, the South Florida Business Journal reported. It will transfer its in-flight entertainment aircraft repair work to Mexicali, Mexico. The company said the layoffs are a result of current market conditions, which have especially affected the financial performance of the commercial aviation market.

Wells Fargo Insurance Services, a subsidiary of Wells Fargo & Co., has acquired the EMAR Group, the latest of several recent acquisitions that have turned the company into the world’s fifth-largest insurance brokerage, the San Francisco Business Times reported. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. EMAR is a large commercial insurance brokerage based in Livingston, N.J., and focused on middle- and upper-mid-market clients and risk-management customers in the New Jersey, New York and Connecticut region. Last month, Wells Fargo Insurance took over Herder-Tarricone Associates of Three Bridges, N.J.; Professional Benefits Associates LLC of Greensboro, N.C.; and Char Clark Associates Inc. in Spokane, Wash.

Faegre & Benson LLP will host its third annual merger and acquisitions conference on Oct. 22 at the Marriott City Center in Minneapolis. The conference is designed to bring together leaders in tax, law, accounting and investment banking to discuss prevailing market conditions and valuations, as well as current trends in M&A transactions. For more details, go to www.faegre.com/showevent.aspx?Show=7235″.

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