In the European Union, the natural gas market is increasingly being liberalized. The liberalization process is aimed at leading to lower prices and higher volumes, and hence higher consumer welfare. This paper focuses on the changes in performance in the natural gas retail market by analyzing the profit and financial position of the companies concerned over the first three years following the market liberalization. The balance sheets of 105 Italian companies in this sector are analyzed, after which a cluster analysis is performed employing the most significant performance indexes. The companies are then analyzed within each cluster with respect to age, size, geographical location and business diversification. The results of our analysis show that the majority of companies attained a high level of performance, although this positive outcome was mitigated by the gradual decrease of the average values of performance indicators during the period concerned. The companies that achieve the best performances belong to longstanding business groups, are medium-large sized and are located in the north of the country. Regarding business diversification, in the first two years, the specialised companies outperformed the diversified companies.

A Cluster Analysis Study Based on Profitability and Financial Indicators in the Italian Gas Retail Market

CRICELLI, Livio;
2010-01-01

Abstract

In the European Union, the natural gas market is increasingly being liberalized. The liberalization process is aimed at leading to lower prices and higher volumes, and hence higher consumer welfare. This paper focuses on the changes in performance in the natural gas retail market by analyzing the profit and financial position of the companies concerned over the first three years following the market liberalization. The balance sheets of 105 Italian companies in this sector are analyzed, after which a cluster analysis is performed employing the most significant performance indexes. The companies are then analyzed within each cluster with respect to age, size, geographical location and business diversification. The results of our analysis show that the majority of companies attained a high level of performance, although this positive outcome was mitigated by the gradual decrease of the average values of performance indicators during the period concerned. The companies that achieve the best performances belong to longstanding business groups, are medium-large sized and are located in the north of the country. Regarding business diversification, in the first two years, the specialised companies outperformed the diversified companies.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11580/14200
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