FTSE Close: Stocks in the red as data disappoints

London stocks closed lower on Tuesday, led by a 0.2% dip in the benchmark FTSE 100 index to 7,721.52. The midcap FTSE 250 index fell further, shedding 177.83 points or 0.9% to end at 19,511.80.

BT Group rose 1.1% following a Sky News report that outgoing Chief Executive Philip Jansen is a contender to become the next chairman of advertising firm WPP. Jansen is leaving BT in spring 2023 after several years at the telecoms helm. WPP shares dipped 1.1% on the news.

Shell added 1% and BP climbed 0.9% as rising tensions in the Red Sea oil transit chokepoint lifted crude prices. Investors anticipate potential supply impacts if the key shipping lane is disrupted.

On the AIM index, LungLife AI jumped 37% after validating its diagnostic blood test for early lung cancer detection. The LungLB test demonstrates 81% accuracy in identifying malignant lung nodules under 15mm, surpassing standard clinical testing.

Conversely, oil services firm Plexus plunged 18%. Plexus licensed newer wellhead technology to Schlumberger in return for $5.2 million upfront.