March 14, 2008: 12:18 PM EDT
Email | Print    Type Size  -  +

Got grimple in your portfolio?

Remember when investors bet on 'Wintel'? Today the smart money is on 'Grimple.'

By Adam Lashinsky, Fortune senior writer

(Fortune Magazine) -- Back in the '90s, "Wintel" became shorthand for the seemingly unstoppable combination of Microsoft's Windows and Intel's chips. Wintel wasn't a bad investment thesis either. For years betting against either stock proved a sucker's game.

Lately hedge fund traders have started using a new term: "Grimple."

Grimple is a conflation of Google, RIM (the acronym for BlackBerry manufacturer Research in Motion (RIMM)), and Apple. Each company is the clear leader in one of tech's hottest areas: Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) for search advertising, RIM for wireless communicators, and Apple (AAPL, Fortune 500) for the convergence of computers, consumer devices, and recorded entertainment.

During market instability, owning three mega-cap market leaders (combined market value: $283 billion) is a comforting idea for some. "People think there's safety there because they're huge," says Douglas Whitman, a tech-focused hedge fund manager in Palo Alto. "The three have fantastic businesses, and none trade for ridiculously high valuations." (Especially now that Apple, Google, and RIM are off 39%, 37%, and 19%, respectively, from their all-time highs.)

Whether the term will spread beyond trading desks is no sure thing, though. Or as a Google spokesperson told Fortune, "I had not heard of 'Grimple' before your e-mail. Sorry about that."  To top of page

Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 16.15 0.00 0.00%
Facebook Inc 58.94 0.00 0.00%
General Electric Co 26.56 0.00 0.00%
Cisco Systems Inc 23.19 -0.02 -0.09%
Micron Technology In... 23.91 0.00 0.00%
Data as of Apr 17
Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,408.54 -16.31 -0.10%
Nasdaq 4,095.52 9.29 0.23%
S&P 500 1,864.85 2.54 0.14%
Treasuries 2.72 0.08 3.19%
Data as of 12:21am ET
Sponsors
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.