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Bank shares rise after BoE slashes rates

LONDON, March 11 (Reuters) - Shares in Britain's top lenders resisted big falls on Wednesday after the Bank of England said banks could tap special capital reserves to keep lending to businesses and households as the coronavirus tightens its grip on Europe.

The move is expected to mitigate further pressure on bank profit margins following the BoE's surprise cut in interest rates by half a percentage point to 0.25%, as the central bank looks to bolster Britain's economy in the face of the outbreak.

Lenders have already seen revenues and profits squeezed by a post-Brexit borrowing slump.

Shares in Britain's biggest domestic lender, Lloyds Banking Group were trading up 2.4%, while shares in Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland gained 3.5% and 2.3% respectively.

HSBC shares were trading 2.2% higher at 0815 GMT.

(Reporting By Sinead Cruise, editing by Clara Denina)