The economic outlook among the nation's small-business owners improved in February, prompting many to boost spending plans for the months ahead, according to Discover.

In a survey of 1,000 owners nationwide, 34 percent said conditions for their businesses were getting better, up from 31 percent in January, while 33 percent said they planned to increase spending on business development, up from 28 percent.

"Small-business owners are seeing some of the larger efforts being made to improve the economy, such as the Fed interest rate cuts and slowing down of downward momentum," Sastry Rachakonda, the director of Discover's business credit card, said in a statement. He said the upturn in confidence was prompting more owners to start investing again in their businesses.