You could call Bahl & Gaynor Investment Counsel one of the most conservative investors around. And that would be just fine with them.

Investors in today’s volatile economic climate are attracted to firms that have avoided risky stocks in favor of dependable ones that grow slowly over time — and it was just such an approach that recently got Bahl & Gaynor noticed byBarron’s, a weekly finance and business magazine published by Dow Jones & Co.

The article, “The Tortoise Wins Again,” explained how Bahl & Gaynor does its best in tough markets like these by investing in blue-chip companies that produce necessities, not luxuries.

“WhatBarron’s recognized is that our approach is unique,” says Matt McCormick, portfolio manager. “We’re very comfortable being contrarians and being risk-averse. When everyone is stepping on the gas, we’re stepping on the brake.”

Bahl & Gaynor isn’t a firm for the masses. It doesn’t manage mutual or hedge funds; rather, it’s a custom tailor shop that specializes in separate accounts for clients’ unique needs. Barron’s only recognizes four such separate account managers in its magazine each year.

McCormick stresses the firm’s pride in its regional identity. “When you live in Cincinnati and you manage money for Cincinnatians, you take a different view of the world than New York or L.A., and we’re OK with that,” he says.

The Queen City is even referenced in the Barron’s article, in which the firm’s approach is likened to the Big Red Machine of the 1970s: “We would rather have singles and doubles and just keep the ball in play,” McCormick says.