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Apple, Microsoft, and Google Meet in Geneva, Groupon's Reinvention, and the Fastest-Growing and Fastest-Dying Industries in America: Our Top Stories

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We've pulled together the best in our coverage of unusual business news, investing strategies, and market commentary. Just for you.

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Here are some highlights from this week in Minyanville's coverage of the worlds of finance, media, and more, just in case you missed them.

Why Did Apple, Microsoft, and Google Meet in Geneva? Like countries trying to ratify a peace treaty, major tech companies sent representatives to Geneva, Switzerland, for a summit hosted yesterday by the United Nations International Telecommunications Unit, or ITU. Companies that attended included Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO), Samsung (KRX:005930), Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), Nokia (NYSE:NOK), Panasonic (NYSE:PC), Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM), and Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM). The US Department of Justice and the US Federal Trade Commission also attended.

Groupon Reinvents Itself as a Professional Competitor The aggressive, competitive strategy that Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) has adopted is interesting because it's so obviously not the easy way out; instead of abandoning creative solutions and trying to better calibrate its existing online-coupon business model, Groupon has instead opted to reinvent itself. It has good reason to do so: Ever since the company's IPO in November of last year, its share price has dropped from its initial value of $20 to as low as $4.15 in September.

Why an iPad Mini Would Be Popular Among Children and Teenagers Michael Walkley, an analyst with Canaccord Genuity, said the likely target market for an iPad Mini would be parents who wish to purchase a tablet for their children. Walkley pointed to Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) Kindle tablet sales last holiday season as the basis for this idea. According to Canaccord Genuity's research, the Kindle did well as a holiday gift from parents to children.

Smokeless Tobacco Advocate Rails Against 'Frauds, Extremists, Liars' After I pointed out the rather cozy relationship between former Congressman Steve Buyer and former campaign donor RJ Reynolds (NYSE:RAI) -- for whom Mr. Buyer advocated tirelessly while in office and is now employed by as a lobbyist -- an email arrived in strident rebuttal to my "misleading smear." The sender was one Bill Godshall, director of a group called Smokefree Pennsylvania.

Just How Much Should We Trust the Congressional Budget Office? In a hyper-polarized political world, the Congressional Budget Office, or CBO, has become the go-to source for politicians whenever they want to argue their cases, because of its reputation of non-partisanship, which instantly confers credibility. But just how accurate are CBO economic reports?
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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