Our Accountants Confidence Index is much less pessimistic this month -- though it's still not optimistic, as our panelists still predict contraction in both the short term and the mid-term.
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. Both the 3-Month and 6-Month ACI readings for this month rose slightly, though both still expected contraction. The 3-Month ACI came in at 48.68, up from 47.53, while the 6-Month ACI hit 49.91, up a hair 49.86.
A reading under 50 indicates that the panel expect the economy to shrink.
Most of the index's components changed very little, with only the short-term expectations for large businesses rising significantly -- perhaps in hopes of strong holiday sales.
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, who are asked to provide their estimates of the growth prospects of their own firms, their small, midsized and large business clients, and of the U.S. economy as a whole. Their responses are weighted and averaged to produce the ACI.
For more on this month's ACI, watch our Executive Summary.