Update from 3:21 p.m. EDT

Energy futures were mostly weaker Tuesday, and the nearest-month oil contract fell below $64 a barrel after U.S. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman suggested the government would be willing to release more heating oil supply to the market.

Light, sweet crude for November delivery dropped $1.57 to $63.90 a barrel in Nymex trading after hitting an intraday low of $63. Heating oil futures lost 3 cents to $2.05 a gallon.

Mike Armbruster, energy analyst Altavest Worldwide Trading, said the drop in prices wasn't surprising given the volatility of the market in the last few days.

"I'm still waiting for a $5-move to happen one of these days," he said. "If it's going to happen, it could happen soon."

The Associated Press reported that in response to a question Monday about the Northeast heating oil supply, Bodman said the U.S. was "prepared to do what is necessary with strategic reserves." Bodman later made similar comments in a televised interview on CNBC.

"I wouldn't be trading on that," Armbruster said of Bodman's comments. "How many times have we seen a rally after news of a release of the strategic petroleum reserve ? They're doing their best to jawbone the market lower."

Natural gas futures rebounded from an earlier selloff to rise 21 cents to $14.23 per mmBtu, and unleaded gasoline was down 6 cents at $2 a gallon.

Meanwhile, BP ( BP) said in a statement on its Web site the hurricanes that recently hit the Gulf Coast, Katrina and Rita, will cut its third-quarter replacement-cost profit before interest and taxes by more than $700 million. The oil giant said its trading conditions were "significantly impacted" by the storms, including reduced refinery output at its Texas City, Texas, refinery.

Exxon Mobil ( XOM) said Monday afternoon that one of its units was the high bidder on the large Cyrenaica Basin Contract Area 44 in the latest Libyan license round.

If you liked this article you might like

Be Like a Samurai -- Do Kendo

Be Like a Samurai -- Do Kendo

Investors Pull More Money Out of Stock Funds

Investors Pull More Money Out of Stock Funds

Investors Keep Pulling Money From Stock Funds

Investors Keep Pulling Money From Stock Funds

Investors Pull Money From Stock Funds

Investors Pull Money From Stock Funds

How to Make Heads and Tails of Coin-Op Machine Collecting

How to Make Heads and Tails of Coin-Op Machine Collecting