Jobson Research's monthly Optical Business Barometer for August shows a slight uptick in the U.S. market. On a scale of 1 to 5, where 5 is the most positive and 3 is neutral, the average opinion of the U.S. industry was 3.7, up from 3.5 in July. The 3.7 matches the figure from March, and those two months have marked the highest scores this year.

The Consumer Confidence Index put out by the Conference Board followed the pattern, with August exceeding July, 53.5 versus 51.0.

August's figures for eyeglasses and exams were better than in July, but the gauge of contact lenses was the same. Participants aren't as positive about the future, however, with their opinion of the overall optical business in the next six months falling to 3.5 in August, down from 3.6 in July.

Jobson surveys U.S. eye care professionals in independent practices whose businesses don't exceed three stores.