December corn is trading 6 cents higher near 7:30 am CST and held within a 7 cent range overnight. Yesterday afternoon's Crop Conditions Report was in line with market estimates and the overnight trade was subdued following the release. Dalian corn was slightly higher overnight. European markets opened slightly stronger overnight after better than expected economic data was reported out of Germany and France. The favorable data was offset after Eurostat released a report showing the Euro Zone economy shrank in the April-June period by.2% when compared to the previous quarter. The estimate was in line with trader estimates and sent the US Dollar lower in early trade. US Stocks are set to open slightly higher while crude oil saw gains after yesterday's declines. The corn market saw a steady trade overnight after yesterday's sharply lower action which was linked to follow through from Friday's trade. The weekly Crop Conditions Report offered limited guidance to traders with good/excellent ratings coming in at 23% compared to 23% last week and 60% last year. This was right in line with trader estimates and broke 9 straight weeks of lower ratings. The lowest good/excellent rating for this time of year is 18% in 1988. Poor/very poor conditions increased 1% to 51% which displays the persistent amount of stress the US corn crop is facing due to drier than normal conditions in the Midwest. Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri all have poor/very poor ratings of over 70%. The US corn crop is now 10% mature vs. 6% last week. The 5 year average for this time of year is 3%. The corn crop remains well ahead of schedule and the market will begin to focus less attention to crop condition ratings and more on yield and quality reports as the harvest moves into the Delta and southern Midwest. Traders expect to hear more reports of below average yields, low test weights, and low moisture as the harvest moves north and west. Cash corn markets remain weak nearby with Gulf of Mexico export channels quoting August barges at their lowest levels since January 2011. This is partly due to the availability of new crop bushels after yields in Louisiana and Mississippi were better than anticipated. Cash export offers have seen a decline as well as cheaper corn is available out of South America and Ukraine. This, along with the recent fund roll by a large bank, has moved the September vs. December calendar spread to -10 cents, discount to the September contract. This is a new low for the spread. Iowa Ethanol Margins were reported at a 33 cent/bu loss last week vs. a 6 cent/bu loss the week prior. Higher corn prices were largely to blame. Spot ethanol continues to trade a 35-40 cent discount to gasoline which is supportive to production going forward given the positive blending economics. It is also being reported that due to the sluggish export demand in the Gulf of Mexico, corn barges have traded to move north towards Ethanol plants in Illinois. This may have a bearish tilt to the export market, but it may also imply that ethanol production will not back off substantially and plants will continue to use this cheaper corn until new crop bushels are available in local markets.