PPL Corporation is an electric utility that both generates electricity and delivers it to consumers in the northeastern and western United States and the United Kingdom. Because the company both generates and transmits electricity - known as vertical integration - it earns higher returns than traditional utilities (which only transmit electricity - they buy power from third party sources) and more stable earnings than electric suppliers (which aren't regulated by the government and therefore aren't guaranteed a profit).  On the unregulated supply side, PPL’s power plants in the United States have a total generating capacity of 11,418MW, 61% of which comes from fossil fuels.  On the regulated distribution side, the company serves approximately 4 million customers in Pennsylvania and the United Kingdom. 
Steps towards deregulation of the electric industry at the state and federal levels in the United States have resulted in increased competition in the wholesale electric market. In 1996, Pennsylvania enacted the Customer Choice Act to restructure the state’s electric utility industry to create a competitive market for electricity generation.  However, on the utility side, PPL Electric maintains a regulated distribution monopoly in its service areas under authorization from the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.
Although PPL has a diversified portfolio of power sources, 61% of its power is still generated from fossil fuels, making the company vulnerable to increases in fuel costs and carbon emissions legislation. In July 2008, a US Appeals Court struck down an EPA emissions cap-and-trade rule, making $100 million in emissions allowances that PPL had purchased worthless.  Pennsylvania has adopted Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) requiring utilities to generate atleast 18% of their energy from renewable energy sources, effective in 2020.  Because Pennsylvania counts PPL's 17% hydroelectric power as renewable under the RPS, PPL has almost satisfied all of the state's mandated renewable energy requirements. 
PPL Corporation is one of the oldest regional power companies in the United States, with vertically integrated operations from Montana to the U.K. The company’s diversified operations results in higher returns than regulated utilities and more stable earnings than electric suppliers.
In 2009, PPL generated a net income of $407 million on revenues of $7.56 billion. This represents a 56.2% decrease in net income on a 5.6% decrease in total revenues from 2008, when the company earned $907 million on revenue of $8.01 billion.
Pennsylvania regulations require PPL to sell two-thirds of its power to Pennsylvania residents at capped prices.In 2010, the state plans to remove its price caps.  The company estimates rates will rise by 36.1% if future power costs match the existing trend, though the Pennsylvania Consumer Advocate expects an even higher price.  In order to ease the transition to market prices, PPL Electric has proposed a plan, pending approval by the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission.
PPL has a monopoly over retail electricity in its areas of service in Pennsylvania because of the barriers to entry to the industry due to the high cost of building infrastructure. This brings stability to the company’s operating outlook by guaranteeing a customer base. As a legally regulated utility, PPL Electric is permitted to generate a return on equity of 10.7%.  If returns exceed this level, the extra revenue must be passed back to ratepayers in the form of savings.
On the other hand, PPL’s regulated status also makes it more difficult for the company to adjust retail prices based on swings in the cost of fuel since regulators must approve changes in electricity rates. If costs increase faster than regulators authorize retail rate increases, the company’s bottom line is negatively affected. In the U.K., retail electric rates are set every five years and automatically adjusted to inflation, helping PPL recover rising fuel costs. 
PPL has a natural monopoly over distribution of retail electricity in its areas of operation in Pennsylvania and the U.K. since the high cost of infrastructure acts as a barrier to entry for other firms. PPL Electric does not face competition in its distribution business, and PPL’s UK subsidiary faces little or no competition in the residential power market. However, customers have the ability to employ self-generating sources of energy, such as installing their own solar panels. 
Unlike its regulated electric distribution business, PPL’s energy supply business is not guaranteed a legal rate of return and its revenue is entirely dependent on the company’s ability to compete with other wholesale electricity providers. ). Competitors include regulated utilities, industrial companies, and non-utility electricity generators. The wholesale electric industry has undergone deregulation at both the federal and state levels. In 1996, Pennsylvania enacted the Customer Choice Act to restructure the state’s electric utility industry to create a competitive market for electricity generation. 
PPL's competitors include: