FTSE drops after best run since May 2017

(For a live blog on European stocks, type LIVE/ in an Eikon news window)

* FTSE 100 down 0.2%, FTSE 250 flat

* NMC tumbles again

* Markets to shut early on Tuesday ahead of Christmas

Dec 24 (Reuters) - London’s main index drifted lower in thin holiday trading on Tuesday after nine straight sessions of gains, weighed down by exporter stocks, while the midcaps were largely flat amid a lack of major drivers.

The FTSE 100 inched 0.2% lower in early deals as the sterling steadied, leading more internationally-exposed firms such as BAT lower. The bourse still hovered around a near five-month high hit in the previous session.

The mid-cap FTSE 250 is on course to rise for the fourth straight month in the aftermath of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s election victory.

NMC Health, which rallied almost 37% on Monday after saying it would launch an independent review of its books, declined nearly 10%. Its shares have been battered since short-selling firm Muddy Waters questioned its financials last week.

UK markets will shut early on Tuesday and remain closed for Christmas and Boxing Day on Wednesday and Thursday. (Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)