After two months of wild swings, the Accountants Confidence Index moved in a more restrained fashion in August, with modest declines in both the short- and the mid-term.

The ACI, published 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 3-Month ACI hit 53.87, down somewhat from the previous month's 56.27 -- but still comfortably above the 50 mark that separates expectations of growth from expectations of contraction. The 6-Month ACI, meanwhile, came in at 56.57, down from last month's 58.53.

The index components also showed modest declines, perhaps marking a retreat from the extreme volatility and uncertainty of the past few months.

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.