December corn was down 3 3/4 cents late in the overnight trade. Outside markets look mixed overnight with a new high in gold but also strength in the US dollar. There seemed to be the weather news and the short-term demand news to pressure the market yesterday but minor support held and the market saw solid buying support for corn and many other commodity markets on the session. Continued talk and stories of potential poor pollination of fields last week across the Corn Belt plus deteriorating crop conditions helped to provide underlying support. December corn closed moderately higher on the session yesterday and closed near the highs of the day and above Friday's close. Funds were noted as aggressive buyers in grains and several other commodity markets and there was talk that some fund managers were positioning "just in case" there was a run down on the US dollar into the debt ceiling deadlines. Deteriorating crop conditions, new export sales news and a moderate break in the US dollar were all factors to help support higher trade. Exporters reported a sale of 200,000 tonnes of US corn to Japan. US weekly crop ratings fell 4% to 62% good to excellent this week and this compares with 72% last year at this time. Traders see the weather outlook as mixed. Rain is expected to benefit crops in the northern Corn Belt but a warm and dry outlook for the southern half of the Corn Belt is seen as somewhat threatening. As a competitor to corn, some traders indicated that losses to the sorghum crop this year might help support better corn demand. Sorghum crop ratings slipped 3% to just 27% good to excellent. Basis bids for barge corn at the gulf were reported to be sharply higher yesterday as there was talk of poor quality supply of corn from the far southern harvest which is just beginning. Corn produced in the Deep South normally moves directly in to the export pipeline. Strong demand and tight government stocks of corn in China has helped support strength in the corn price in the past week. Massive expansion and modernization of the hog industry in China is expected to boost demand for corn in the second half of this year and into 2012. This may indicate the importance of a high-yielding corn crop from China this year or import demand could remain strong.