March soybeans were trading 8 cents lower late in the overnight session. China futures closed 0.2% higher overnight and Malaysia palm oil futures closed 0.5% higher. Equity markets in Asia were generally mixed overnight. European stocks were also mixed but early US equity market action was positive. The IMF might be poised to expand its lending capacity by as much as $1 trillion and that might increase confidence in the capacity to assist the Euro zone in its debt battles. The markets saw well attended debt auctions from Germany and Portugal overnight and that looks to have fostered some optimism which could provide some support to physical commodity markets. The US Dollar has started out weaker against the euro and it was also generally weaker against most of the actively traded currencies. In looking ahead, the US markets will see a PPI report, Industrial Production, Capacity Utilization and a NAHB housing index report. Expectations for the US data is for generally positive readings but that optimism could be countervailed in the face of debt restructuring efforts in Greece. It is also possible that US debt wrangling might find its way into the headlines as an influence unless there is a surprise extension of the debt ceiling. The outlook for a decent rain event of 1/2 to 1 inch in Argentina for the coming weekend and for this rain to move into southern Brazil late in the weekend remains a negative force. Traders seem to believe that the worst growing conditions are past and that more normal weather could benefit late planted crops. Soybean and product basis levels were stronger in South America yesterday as traders see delays for the early harvested areas of northwestern Brazil. This area continues to receive too much rain and there is some concerns that harvest delays could back up shipments. China was rumored to have bought 3-4 cargoes of US soybeans yesterday and there is talk that China crush margins are positive for the first time in months. March soybeans saw late buying support to close sharply higher on the session yesterday even after traders viewed the mid-day weather model update as slightly negative. Talk of a large trade house buying soybeans and selling corn may have helped to support the market late in the day. A more positive tilt to outside markets, a drier forecast for Argentina into the coming weekend and signs of better than expected demand helped to support strong gains early in the session. The surge up in gold, a 4% jump in the China stock market and a sharp set-back in the US dollar helped spark some speculative buying. Weekly export inspections totaled 40.9 million bushels which was well above trade expectations and well above the 19.07 million necessary each week to reach the USDA projection for the year. However, total shipments are still just 640 million bushels as compared with 891.7 million last year by this date. The monthly NOPA crush report was also supportive showing December crush at 145.4 million bushels which was well above expectations and up from 141.3 million in November. This was up about 4 million from expectations. Traders also took note in the soybean oil yield which was 11.36 pounds per bushel as compared with 11.53 last year. Traders are again trying to determine if there is a shift in the weather pattern in South America back to a dry period into mid-February or if timely rains will hit this weekend and next weekend and then a shift to a wetter, more normal pattern.