Our Accountants Confidence Index split between growth and contraction, with the short-term outlook particularly grim.

The ACI, created in partnership with ADP, is a monthly economic indicator that leverages the insights of accountants into the strength and prospects of businesses in the U.S. The 6-Month ACI readings for this month was on the positive side of 50, which is the divider between growth and contraction, but the 3-Month ACI reading dipped into negative territory. The 3-Month ACI came in at 49.92, down from 50.04, while the 6-Month ACI hit 51.30, down from 51.64.

None of the index components saw significant changes -- the vast majority ticked downward slightly, with the notable exceptions of minor increases in the respondents' short-term expectations for the U.S. economy, and their mid-term expectations for the growth of their own firms.

The ACI is created from a monthly poll of the Accounting Today Executive Research Council, an online community of more than 1,500 tax and accounting professionals.