Reducing utility bills without re-nationalising the entire industry.

In any market, one thing that keeps a lid on prices and therefore also a lid on company profits is the existence of a state player.
 
The state company will not be focused on profits but on providing a fair product or service at a fair price.
 
Specifically a state company is not interested in the absolute maximum price that they can screw the customer for.
 
Without a state player or real market competition a company will seek to maximize profits by increasing their prices as high as they can, if that means some people can no longer afford that service or product then "so what" as e.g. the lost 10% of sales from the poor is more than compensated for by 50% extra income from the price rise.
 
What happens is you basically move away from a system that charges a fair price based on what the service costs to one that charges a price based on what the market can bear with the aim of maximizing profits.
 
Point being that companies know that the existence of a state player in the market limits their profits, what they need is that player out of the market so they can apply market forces to maximise profits regardless of the social cost.
 
Applying market forces is one thing but we assume the "market" is working and there are no cartels.
 
As cartels are illegal what happens in reality is that the companies know that with the removal of the last state player the gloves are off and all they have to do is all move price increases in step and make sure there is not a great deal between their prices thus removing any real competition.
 
The end result is they all maximise their profits leaving the customers wondering if they can afford the service/product or not and possibly can they afford not to live without that product or service?
 
If the product is a non-essential item that is one thing but if the product is an essential item or service it is not acceptable to place them beyond the reach of anyone.
 
The privatization of the utilities did not create a "effective market" that benefited the customers, it created a market that behaves as though it was a cartel which has not benefited customers.
 
Anyone that said the privatization of the utilities was not going to result in the customers getting screwed was either a liar of a gullible fool.
 
I suggest that an alternative to the re-nationalisation of the utility industries is the creation of a state owned company within each sector with all profits ploughed back into the public coffers.
 
This cat amongst the pigeons would provide a transparent insight into each industry and establish a fair profit margin for all companies involved.
 
The idea is not to crush corporations for the sake of it as they can be of great use to society but to crush excessive profits of corporations in environments where the "market" does not seem to be working effectively.