More people likely purchased new homes in June than the previous month, although sales are expected to remain below healthy levels.
Economists forecast that new-home sales rose to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 323,000 in June, according to a survey by FactSet. The Commerce Department will release the report at 10 a.m. Tuesday.
In May, sales fell 2.1 percent to an annual rate of 319,000. That’s less than half the 700,000 homes per year that economists say is typical in healthy markets.
In a separate report Tuesday, Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller will release its home-price index for May. The index measures home prices in 20 of the largest U.S. metro areas. It sank in March to its lowest levels since 2002. It rebounded slightly in April because of a traditional influx of spring buying.
Housing remains the weakest part of the U.S. economy. Sales of new homes have fallen 18 percent in the two years since the recession ended. Last year was the worst for new-home sales on records dating back a half century.
High unemployment, larger down payment requirements and tougher lending standards are preventing many people from buying homes. And some potential buyers who can clear those hurdles are holding off, worried that home prices have yet to bottom out.