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Unlocking the Secrets of Mohnish Pabrai’s Clone Investing Strategy

Unlocking the Secrets of Mohnish Pabrai's Clone Investing Strategy


There is a myriad of investment strategies in the stock market, but one that has gained significant attention is the clone investing strategy. This approach is closely associated with a notable figure in the investment world, Mohnish Pabrai. Known for his value investing approach and his success as the founder and Managing Partner of Pabrai Investments Funds, Pabrai’s investment principles have become a guiding beacon for many in the industry.

Who is Mohnish Pabrai?

Mohnish Pabrai is an Indian-American businessman, investor, and philanthropist. His journey in the high-speed data networking group at Tellabs between 1986-91 shaped his acumen before he ventured into international marketing and sales. His investment prowess is inspired by Warren Buffett, leading to a concentrated portfolio strategy that has earned him much acclaim.

Pabrai’s Clone Investing Strategy

Pabrai’s clone investing strategy is a unique approach that involves replicating the stock purchases of successful value investors. The essence of this strategy is to learn and adapt from the investment techniques of these financial gurus. Pabrai strongly believes in the power of cloning as a source of great investment ideas, which can help shape a robust portfolio akin to the gurus.

Significance of Clone Investing Strategy

The clone investing strategy holds a significant place in the investing world. It provides a unique opportunity for investors to gain insights from the strategies of successful investors like Charlie Munger. However, it’s crucial to remember that while this strategy provides a starting point, it is not a shortcut to success. Every investment decision should be backed by a thorough analysis, and even when cloning, one must understand the underlying rationale behind every stock pick. Blind cloning can lead to potential risks, and it’s essential to be mindful of the same.

Pabrai’s Investment Approach

Mohnish Pabrai, a renowned investor, has constructed a successful investment career by adhering to a set of principles that guide his investment decisions. These principles are the foundation of Pabrai’s clone investing strategy and serve as a blueprint for achieving success in the stock market.

Identification and Selection of Stocks

At the heart of Pabrai’s investment approach is the ability to identify and select the right stocks. He firmly believes in investing in companies that he would be willing to own entirely. His focus is on value investing, where he aims to buy stocks at a price lower than their intrinsic value. This method allows him to take advantage of market inefficiencies and invest in undervalued companies. To ensure a company’s worth, he also looks for a competitive advantage or a protective moat that shields the company’s profitability and market share.

Pabrai’s Investment Tenets

Pabrai’s portfolio comprises a few, but significant, bets. He meticulously picks stocks that he believes have the potential to yield positive returns. His portfolio is concentrated, allowing him to thoroughly understand each company he invests in. This deep understanding of his investments increases his chances of making informed and successful decisions.

An essential component of Pabrai’s strategy is patience. He emphasizes the importance of waiting for the right investment opportunity and staying committed to your investments despite market volatility. He also stresses the significance of learning from your mistakes, viewing them as opportunities for growth and improvement.

Focus on Emerging Markets

Pabrai’s investment approach extends beyond the U.S. market. He concentrates on India and other emerging markets where he finds more opportunities for undervalued stocks. This global perspective allows him to diversify his portfolio and benefit from growth in these markets.

Clone Investing Strategy

Lastly, Pabrai encourages investors to use the portfolios of successful investors as a starting point for research. This technique, known as the clone investing strategy, can provide a valuable screening tool for identifying potential investment opportunities.

To delve deeper into the principles of Pabrai’s investment approach, click here.

The Art of Cloning in Investing

The Essence of Clone Investing Strategy

At the heart of Mohnish Pabrai’s investment strategy is the concept of cloning. Pabrai’s approach has been shaped by the investment principles of market wizards like Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, whose strategies he has carefully studied and replicated. His belief in the power of cloning stems from the idea of borrowing successful investment strategies and applying them to his own portfolio.

Applying the concept of cloning in investing essentially means borrowing investment ideas from successful investors and replicating their portfolios. Pabrai has been vocal about his admiration for market wizards and he actively seeks to understand their investment philosophies. However, he emphasizes that cloning is not about blind imitation. It’s about separating the wheat from the chaff. Only after thorough analysis and due diligence does he decide which ideas to adopt.

The Pros and Cons of Clone Investing

As with any investment strategy, clone investing has its benefits and drawbacks. One of the key benefits is that it offers a learning experience. Clone investing not only allows novice investors to draw confidence from others’ investments but also provides an opportunity to understand their strategies. Moreover, it can foster a collaborative effort among investors, especially on platforms where ideas are shared and discussed.

However, clone investing comes with its own set of challenges. A time horizon mismatch is one common pitfall, where the clone investor may have a different investment objective compared to the investor they are cloning. This can result in underperformance or even substantial losses. Other challenges include changes in the risk-reward profile and the potential for neglecting individual analysis.

Pabrai’s Clone Investing Triumphs

Pabrai’s success in the stock market is a testament to the efficacy of his clone investing strategy. He has made some impressive clone investments, with Fiat Chrysler (FCAU), Micron (MU), and GrafTech (EAF) being some of the notable examples. Pabrai’s concentrated portfolio and his ability to go all-in on companies he believes in have contributed to these successes.

However, his triumphs are not merely a result of cloning successful investors. They are also a result of his deep understanding of value investing principles and his ability to identify and select promising stocks.

To explore more on the wisdom behind Pabrai’s cloning strategy, you can visit here.

In conclusion, clone investing, as practiced by Mohnish Pabrai, can be a powerful tool for investors. However, it needs to be applied with caution and a thorough understanding of the underlying investment principles.

Pabrai’s 10 Commandments of Investing

Investment guru Mohnish Pabrai is renowned for his clone investing strategy, a tactic that merges the value investing principles of the greats like Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger with his unique insights. Essential to this strategy are Pabrai’s 10 Commandments of Investing. This set of investment principles is not only a roadmap for his own financial decisions but also serves as an invaluable guide for both novice and seasoned investors.

The Commandments Explained

  1. Thou shall not skim off the top: Pabrai advises against charging high fees. He believes in reinvesting profits to grow capital, emphasizing the power of compounding.

  2. Thou shalt not have an investment team: Independence is key. Pabrai champions the idea of individual decision-making in investment choices.

  3. Thou shalt accept that thou shalt be wrong at least one-third of the time: Acknowledging mistakes is vital. No investor is infallible, and humility is a virtue in the stock market.

  4. Thou shalt look for hidden PE of 1 stocks: This commandment emphasises the core of value investing – seeking undervalued stocks with significant potential for growth.

  5. Thou shalt never use Excel: Rely on your judgement, not just spreadsheets. Critical thinking and qualitative analysis are equally vital.

  6. Thou shalt always have a rope to climb out of the deepest well: Risk management is crucial. Always have a contingency plan to mitigate potential losses.

  7. Thou shalt be singularly focused: Concentration is key. Avoid distractions and remain focused on your investment goals.

  8. Thou shalt never short a stock: Pabrai advises against speculation. Prioritize long-term growth and sustainable success.

  9. Thou shalt not introduce leverage: Prudent risk management is critical. Preserve your capital and avoid unnecessary financial risks.

  10. Thou shalt be a shameless cloner: Learn from the best. Pabrai urges investors to study the strategies of successful investors and incorporate their wisdom into your own approach.

Pabrai’s 10 Commandments guide him in navigating the often tumultuous waters of the stock market. They are the bedrock of his investment decisions and the key to his success. For those wishing to delve deeper into the guiding principles of Pabrai’s investment strategy, you can explore them thoroughly here. By adhering to these commandments, investors can emulate Pabrai’s success and make their journey in the stock market a rewarding one.

Frequently Asked Questions

Mohnish Pabrai’s Stock Selection

You may wonder, how does Mohnish Pabrai select stocks for his portfolio? Well, Pabrai goes for companies with a durable competitive advantage, strong management, and those trading at a discount to intrinsic value. He is known for his concentrated portfolio and often clones the portfolios of other successful investors as a starting point for his own research. He emphasizes the importance of understanding the underlying business and staying within one’s circle of competence when buying stocks.

Returns from Pabrai’s Clone Investing Strategy

Another common question is, what kind of returns has Pabrai’s clone investing strategy yielded? The strategy has seen considerable success. While exact figures aren’t provided, it’s stated that Pabrai’s fund has achieved serious outperformance and great success. Cloning the investment ideas of successful investors, particularly Warren Buffett, and going all-in on the selected companies has proven to outperform the S&P 500 by an annual average of 10.75% from 1976. In short, Pabrai’s clone investing strategy has delivered impressive results.

Applicability of Pabrai’s Clone Investing Strategy for Individual Investors

And can individual investors apply Pabrai’s clone investing strategy? The answer is a resounding yes! This strategy is not exclusive to Mohnish Pabrai and can be implemented by any investor who is willing to do the research.

Resources on Pabrai’s Investment Philosophy

Lastly, where can you learn more about Pabrai’s investment philosophy? There are several resources available. Pabrai’s book, ‘The Dhandho Investor: The Low-Risk Value Method to High Returns’, offers insights into his investment approach and principles. Another book, ‘Mosaic: Perspectives on Investing’, is a collection of articles written by Pabrai that discuss his investment philosophy. ‘The Education of a Value Investor’ by Guy Spier, covers Pabrai’s approach to life and investing. Various lectures and interviews by Pabrai available online also offer valuable insights. Lastly, Pabrai’s own writings and blog posts provide a deeper understanding of his investment philosophy and decision-making process.


In the world of stock market investing, Mohnish Pabrai’s clone investing strategy stands out not just for its simplicity, but also for the profound value it brings to both novice and seasoned investors. This unique approach, deeply rooted in the principles of value investing, empowers individuals to tap into the wisdom and expertise of the world’s top investors.

By studying and replicating the investment strategies of successful investors, we create a solid platform for identifying potential investment opportunities. We learn to build a disciplined framework for making sound investment decisions, free from emotional biases. Remember, the objective is not just to copy, but to understand and adapt these principles to our unique investing styles.

In essence, clone investing is more than just mirroring a successful investor’s portfolio. It’s about understanding the underlying investment philosophy, learning from their experiences, and incorporating their tried and tested principles into our investment approach.

So, whether you’re just starting out or looking to enhance your investing prowess, embracing the clone investing strategy could be your gateway to achieving superior returns in the stock market.