LONG ISLAND


Ex 'Idol' launches eyewear line

Match Eyewear Llc, a Mineola maker of designer glasses, has a new celebrity licensing and promotion contract with former "American Idol" competitor Danny Gokey. Gokey launched his effort with Match Eyewear this weekend by participating in the International Vision Expo at the Javits Center in Manhattan. The company said he will market a line of eyeglass frames with an edge; it will include 12 styles for men 18 to 35, to be in stores this month. "It's refreshing to work with an artist with so much passion for eyewear," said Match Eyewear president Ethan Goodman. Gokey finished third on "American Idol" in 2009. -- Joseph Mallia


NATION


Feb. home contracts decline

The number of Americans who signed contracts to buy U.S. homes dipped in February from nearly a two-year high, a mixed signal ahead of the spring home-buying season. The National Association of Realtors said Monday that its index of sales agreements declined 0.5 percent last month to a reading of 96.5. January's reading of 97 was the highest since April 2010, the last month buyers could qualify for a federal home-buying tax credit. A reading of 100 or higher is considered healthy. More signings in recent months are a sign of a slight pick-up in the housing market. But analysts said the February decline was disappointing after the three best months of hiring in two years.


BMW recalling 1.3 million cars

BMW AG is recalling 1.3 million 5- and 6-series cars from the 2003 to 2010 model years. The company says that in rare cases a battery cable covering in the trunk was incorrectly installed. The defect could prevent the car from starting and in extreme cases could lead to a fire. BMW says it knows of no accidents or injuries from the defect. The company said owners will be notified by letter and that the repair should take about 30 minutes. The recall affects 1.3 million cars worldwide, including about 367,000 in the United States.


New AT&T smartphone

AT&T Inc. said Monday it will begin selling the Lumia 900, its first Nokia Corp. smartphone that runs Windows Phone software, on April 8, for $100 with a two-year contract. The Finnish phone manufacturer is counting on Microsoft Corp.'s software to turn its fortunes around and provide it with an entry into the U.S. market. U.S. consumers were not interested in the Symbian software Nokia used for its earlier smartphones. AT&T said it would also carry another Windows Phone, the Titan II from HTC Corp., for $200.


Bank pick on 'listening tour'

The U.S. Treasury Department says Jim Young Kim, the Obama administration's nominee to head the World Bank, is starting a global tour to promote his candidacy. The Treasury said that Kim, the president of Dartmouth College, would begin his "listening tour" Tuesday. He will meet with finance ministers and government officials in Ethiopia, China, Japan, South Korea, India, Brazil and Mexico. Kim is competing against candidates from Nigeria and Colombia, but he is considered a heavy favorite for the post.


Dems unveil business tax cuts

Senate Democrats Monday proposed a $26-billion temporary tax cut for businesses to boost their payrolls and encourage investment in new equipment. The legislation would give businesses a tax credit of 10 percent on the salaries of new hires or pay raises for existing workers. Businesses that make major capital investments in new equipment would be able to write off those investments immediately rather than over several years. The idea is to boost hiring and investment as the economic recovery continues to take hold. The temporary tax cuts would apply to 2012 wages and investments. Backers include Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.). -- AP

Trump trial closing arguments today … NYS lithium battery rules … Holocaust survivor learns to tango Credit: Newsday

West Babylon school budget ... Rangers Game 4 ... Nassau cold case reopened ... Florida in a day

Trump trial closing arguments today … NYS lithium battery rules … Holocaust survivor learns to tango Credit: Newsday

West Babylon school budget ... Rangers Game 4 ... Nassau cold case reopened ... Florida in a day

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