The latest reading on consumer confidence, released this morning by the Conference Board, showed a larger-than-expected decline in July. The drop in confidence comes just one month after reaching a five-year high. Meanwhile, a separate survey conducted by the University of Michigan found that consumer sentiment in July improved to its highest level in six years. So, what is with the mixed signals? “Americans have access to so much more information today that it becomes overwhelming and it creates a lot more uncertainty.