Throughout the 1990s, investor-owned utilities have redefined the way they do business to position themselves for competition better. The downside of these efforts is higher rates for small customers and employee layoffs.
Today, IOUs are more focused on improved efficiency. IOUs are concentrating on keeping large customers, investing less in their utility systems and retiring debt.
Though IOUs continue to dominate electric generation nationwide (74 percent), electric output has increased by only 8.1 percent since 1990.