US STOCKS-Wall St drifts lower; Google buoys Nasdaq
* Google up as CFO to move from Morgan Stanley
* Shares of miner Freeport fall after it slashes dividend
* Whiting Petroleum shares tumble after share, note offering
* Indexes off: Dow 0.31 pct, S&P 0.3 pct, Nasdaq 0.05 pct (Updates to late afternoon)
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, March 24 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks drifted lower on Tuesday, as equities kept in a tight range that corresponded with currency fluctuations as traders focused on the dollar's strength and its possible effect on corporate earnings.
Declines on the Nasdaq were held in check by a boost from Google, up 2.3 percent to $578.24. Morgan Stanley's chief financial officer is leaving the bank to join Google.
Data from home sales to inflation and manufacturing indicated the U.S. economy remains strong, but failed to alter expectations of a faster or steeper monetary policy tightening path at the Federal Reserve.
Traders have honed in on how the Fed will react to economic data, as a June interest rate increase remains a possibility. Stocks have been inversely correlated to the U.S. dollar and several multinational companies have given earnings guidance that cited a negative impact from a strong greenback. Continuación...