Ankeny-based Casey’s General Stores today reported a significant increase in sales and a total gross profit of nearly seven percent in its just-concluded second quarter. Iowa State University retail economist Ken Stone says it’s a measure of consumer confidence. Stone says there’s no doubt that we’re in the middle of an economic recovery, and seeing Casey’s sales numbers shows him people are traveling more. Stone says travel tendencies tell more about the level of confidence Americans have in the economy than most consumer confidence surveys, surveys he calls “short-sighted.” Stone says he travels a lot and sees lots of folks on the roads and in airplanes, spending money which he says proves Americans have regained confidence in the economy and feel safer. Casey’s General Stores executives say they’ve had “two solid quarters” with more profit at the pumps and inside their stores.