Several companies freeze operations as severe weather disrupts parts of U.S. By Reuters

© Reuters. A Federal Express truck on delivery is pictured in downtown Los Angeles

(Reuters) – Several companies, including FedEx Corp (NYSE:) and General Motors Co (NYSE:), have taken a hit from bone-chilling weather that has gripped parts of the United States, causing power outages and gas shortages.

A rare deep freeze sweeping southern U.S. states reached the northern part of neighboring Mexico over the three-day Presidents Day holiday weekend, leaving millions without power and sending oil prices to near 13-month highs.

Package delivery company FedEx Corp said on Tuesday that the severe weather was affecting its ability to pick up and deliver packages in certain cities.

General Motors Co said it had canceled the first shift production at its Spring Hill, Tennessee; Bowling Green, Kentucky; Fort Wayne, Indiana; and Arlington, Texas factories, which make some of its most profitable pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles including Chevrolet Silverado and Escalade.

“We will be making decisions at the respective plants later this morning regarding their production status for 2nd shift today,” a GM spokesman said.

GM’s smaller rival Ford Motor (NYSE:) Co has reportedly stopped production of its F-150 pickup trucks and transit vans at its Kansas City assembly plant due to gas shortage. (https://

The freeze also continued to wreak havoc on the U.S. energy sector, bringing operations to a halt at the Houston Ship channel, while several of the biggest oil refineries remained offline in the nation’s largest crude-producing state.

The National Weather Service has said an Arctic air mass had spread southward, well beyond areas accustomed to freezing weather, with winter storm warnings posted for most of the Gulf Coast region, Oklahoma and Missouri.

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