December corn is trading 4 cents higher near 7:30 am CST and there were no September corn deliveries overnight. Dalian corn traded slightly higher overnight. Corn managed marginal gains overnight on support from a stronger wheat market. The US Dollar is trading slightly higher following Friday's sharply lower trade and crude oil is steady. European markets inched lower to the start the week on profit taking following last week's gains and ahead of a German ruling on the Euro zone's new bailout fund announced by the ECB last week. Investors are looking ahead to Wednesday's FOMC meeting where most feel the Fed will announce new stimulus plans following last Friday's weak jobs data.

Farmers are beginning to harvest as far north as Ohio this week and a return to warmer and drier weather conditions will enable harvest progress to continue at record pace. The September 2nd harvest progress was pegged at 10% complete and the USDA could show nearly 20% of the harvest complete when it releases its new report this afternoon. Minor harvest delays were seen over the weekend with rain favoring Ohio, Southern Indiana and Illinois, and parts of the Southeast. Weather conditions in South America are being watched closely as planting attempts to begin; however the dry conditions have delayed any such progress. Some forecasters have increased the likelihood for rain in Central and Northern Brazil the next 11-15 days while others maintain the drier outlook. Despite the disagreement, the area is certainly trending drier and precipitation is needed.

The Commitments of Traders reports for the week ending September 4th showed Non-Commercial and Non-Reportable combined traders held a net long position of 281,808 contracts, up 10,670 contracts for the week. Non-Commercial traders were net long 367,114 contracts, an increase of 12,298 contracts for the week and trend-Following Funds (Non-Commercials net of index funds) show a net long of 271,643 contracts, up 12,103 for the week vs. the record long position of 372,756. The buying trend is positive and the net position is still well short of the record.

Spot basis bids for corn were steady to slightly weaker for most of the US Corn Belt last week and the trend is expected to continue this week as harvest moves along. An elevator in Blair, NE finished the week at 5 cents over the December contract after beginning the week at 15 cents over. Decatur, IL corn bids were unchanged at 28 cents over the December contract while bids on the river were steady, but were marginally supported by a firmer barge freight market due to unavailability of empty barges. Tropical Storm Leslie and Hurricane Michael are tracking north in the Atlantic so no weather related interruptions are expected at Gulf of Mexico export facilitates.

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