An index measuring sentiment among small business owners gained for the second consecutive month, moving just below a level that would indicate positive growth in the economy.
The National Federation of Independent Business survey registered an 88.9 reading, a notch below the 90 that would indicate the climate for small businesses is growing rather than merely not shrinking as quickly.
"We've been suggesting that we will be slightly negative this quarter and push through to positive in the third," NFIB Chief Economist William Dunkelberg said in a live interview on CNBC.
Nine of the 10 indicators in the NFIB survey were either flat or positive, with credit concerns being the only dark spot.
"They expect it to be difficult to get financing over the next six months," Dunkelberg said. "In spite of the heavy easing that's going on they're not seeing a real optimistic outlook."
When people are feeling positive, they typically spend more money and make more investments. That is not guaranteed, but it is a good sign. Or -- another good sign.