THE shilling has continued to lose against the US dollar as importers' demand outweighs inflows of the hard currencies in the local market. National Microfinance Bank (NMB) said in Dar es Salaam the local market was still liquid although the shilling lost the battle against the greenback, sliding by 5/- compared to the end of last week. "The shilling traded at 1,575/1,590, over five shillings down from Friday's close," NMB said in its e-market report. Standard Chartered Bank said the dollar was picking up against the shilling due to increased demand in the market. "We saw increased activities in the interbank market yesterday and we expect the trend to continue today," the bank said. According to the Bank of Tanzania's July Monthly Economic Review, the shilling has remained relatively stable for the last one month. The central bank data show an exchange rate of 1,584/13 per US dollar at the end of June compared to 1,584/84 of the preceding month. "On annual basis, the shilling depreciated by 1.5 per cent from 1,560/08 recorded in June 2011," the report said. In June, 114.2 million US dollars were traded in the Inter-bank foreign exchange market (IFEM) slightly higher than the 106.5 million US dollars transacted in May. BoT participated in the market by selling 28.3 million US dollars on net basis compared to 45.9 million US dollars sold in the preceding month. Meanwhile, interbank volume doubled to 31.8bn/- from 15.8bn/-. "The market is expecting the volume to remain around this region for the next two days before slowing on the back of the bills auction which is forecast to be oversubscribed," Standard Chartered Bank said. The highest rate was flat at five per cent whilst the lowest rate dropped to its usual low of 0.5 per cent from 3.5 per cent. Average rate decreased to 4.46 per cent from 4.63 per cent.