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BILL WOLFF: This is NPR.

(Soundbite of music)

MARK GARRISON: Thank you, Mike. Beer snobs say their brew's watery, but its makers now awash in money. American brewer, Anheuser-Busch, is selling to Europe's InBev. The deal went through Sunday after InBev jacked up its buyout offer. Adam Allington of member station KWMU has the story.

ADAM ALLINGTON: Together with Miller and Coors, Anheuser-Busch, maker of Budweiser, Michelob, and Bud Lite, is now owned by a foreign company. The agreement signals the end of over 150 years of local management of the company many viewed as America's brewer. InBev CEO, Carlos Brito, says the new company, called Anheuser-Busch-InBev, will continue that tradition.

Mr. CARLOS BRITO (Chief Executive Officer, InBev): We'll continue to be very committed to St. Louis, to the roots of AB as a company and as a brand, Budweiser. We're not going to close any of the breweries in the U.S. The 12 breweries will remain open. Headquarters for the North American operation will continue to be in St. Louis.

ALLINGTON: The merger will create the world's largest brewer, producing over 12 billion gallons of beer annually.

GARRISON: Adam Allington of member station KWMU reporting. Nine American troops died in Afghanistan Sunday. The attack was the deadliest in three years. More than 100 militants fought their way to a remote base. Some even got inside before U.S. troops beat them back. The battle in Afghanistan has gotten hotter lately. Death tolls of U.S. and allied troops there outpaced losses in Iraq in May and June.

Gas prices are still going up. The Lundberg Survey tracks them, and there's a sliver of hope in the latest numbers. The price increases are less intense. Again, just a sliver of hope. Here's NPR's Dave Mattingly with more.

DAVID MATTINGLY: Analyst Trilby Lundberg says most Americans are still paying more than four dollars a gallon for gas, though the price increases have slowed to a crawl.

Ms. TRILBY LUNDBERG (Publisher, The Lundberg Survey): The average price of regular is $4.11. It's up one and a half pennies from three weeks ago.

MATTINGLY: The cost of premium gasoline has risen to $4.35 a gallon nationwide, but the latest Lundberg Survey shows there remains a big gap between the high and low ends.

Ms. LUNDBERG: Right now, the lowest average on our survey is in Tucson, Arizona. Regular grade average is $3.82 there, and at the high end is San Francisco, $4.53.

MATTINGLY: In July of last year, prices at the pumps were more than a dollar a gallon cheaper. Lundberg says although Americans have been cutting back on their driving this summer, gas prices will likely go up some more before the fall.

GARRISON: NPR's Dave Mattingly with that story. The Minnesota Senate race already has an ex-comedian in it. Now, an ex-wrestler may join the mix. Jesse Ventura is expected to announce tonight whether he'll jump in the race. You'll recall the former pro wrestler had a second career as Minnesota's governor. If he runs, he'll face Republican incumbent, Norm Coleman, and satirist, Al Franken, the Democratic nominee. It would be a rematch. Ventura topped Coleman in a three-way race for governor in 1998. Standby for tired puns and expect lots of headlines with mat, body slam, and smack down in them, if he runs. That is the news for now. Plenty more online at npr.org.

WOLFF: This is NPR.

MIKE PESCA, host:

Perhaps Jesse the Body will split the I-only-vote-for-celebrity-novelty candidate bloc because...

GARRISON: He could get it all.

PESCA: Yeah. Yeah. Maybe he'll own that.

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