* FTSE 100 down 0.9%, FTSE 250 down 0.3%
* Centrica, Barclays drag on main index
* Number of coronavirus cases in China rises
* NMC dives after SocGen double downgrade (Adds news items, analyst comments, updates share prices)
Feb 13 (Reuters) - London's blue-chip index was dragged lower on Thursday by steep falls in heavyweights Barclays and Centrica, while a rise in new coronavirus cases in China jolted risk sentiment.
British utility Centrica skidded 15% to a three-month low after its 2019 profit slumped by more than a third, leading the FTSE 100 to shed 0.9% after two successive days of gains.
Barclays was a major drag on the bourse as the bank slipped 2.7%. Britain's financial regulators were probing historical links between its chief executive officer and U.S. financier Jeffrey Epstein, which overshadowed financial results.
The mid-cap FSTE 250 lost 0.3%, tracking a broader risk-off sentiment as the Chinese province of Hubei, an epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, reported a record rise in deaths and thousands of more cases.
The increase in numbers, which came after China introduced a new diagnostic procedure involving quicker computerised tomography (CT) scans to screen patients, dented hopes that the outbreak would soon plateau.
After the initial outbreak roiled global markets last month, investors have become more sensitive to the rate of its escalation for hints over further bets.
"The fact the rise is down to a reporting change means so far we've only seen mild losses as investors take stock, but a more cautious approach is warranted," Markets.com analyst Neil Wilson said.
By 0843 GMT, all sectors on the FTSE 100 traded in the red, with oil majors Shell and BP among major drags. The index underperformed the broader European benchmark as more of its components are exposed to commodity prices.
UAE-based NMC Health, whose shares have swung sharply in recent sessions amid takeover chatter, tumbled 9% after analysts at SocGen slapped the stock with a double rating downgrade.
"We conclude that a board reset and a full audit are needed to restore investor confidence," SocGen analysts wrote.
Coca Cola HBC outperformed with a 4% gain after it, along with fellow bottler Coca-Cola European Partners, reported a higher annual profit, and forecast faster growth in volume across its segments in 2020.
Small-cap drugmaker Indivior tanked almost 19% after it reported a fourth-quarter loss and forecast a further drop in sales this year. (Reporting by Shashwat Awasthi in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Shounak Dasgupta)