A monthly economic report suggests supply managers surveyed in nine Midwestern and Plains states are optimistic about the regional economy over the next six months.
The confidence index for the Mid-America Business Conditions Index jumped to 66.5 last month from 57.2 in November. However, the overall index rose just 2 points, to 53.2 from 51.2 in November.
Creighton University economist Ernie Goss oversees the survey and says businesses tied to agriculture continue to report softer economic conditions.
The survey results are compiled into a collection of indexes ranging from zero to 100. Survey organizers say any score above 50 suggests growth while a score below that suggests decline.
The survey covers Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and South Dakota.