The president-elect warned Gregory Hayes, the chief executive of Carrier’s parent, United Technologies, that he had to find a way to save a substantial share of the jobs it had vowed to move to Mexico, or he would face the wrath of the incoming administration.
“The free market has been sorting it out and America’s been losing,” Mr. Pence added, as Mr. Trump interjected, “Every time, every time.”
Some economists called Mr. Trump’s actions, including an earlier agreement with Ford Motor Co. to keep some production at a Kentucky plant, an unsustainable intervention in the economy.
“If this is what the Trump team thinks macroeconomic policy is, then they don’t understand the scale of the economy,” said Justin Wolfers, a professor of economics and public policy at the University of Michigan.
The economy currently loses nearly 7 million jobs a quarter through the churn of companies failing, closing or leaving the U.S., Mr. Wolfers said, citing data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Firms contracting or leaving a market is the natural state of business.”
The more pressing issue for the incoming administration would be to find ways to encourage more private job creation, rather than trying to intervene to prevent individual firms from leaving or shutting down.
“Deal-making is not macroeconomic policy,” Mr. Wolfers said. “We should understand it’s politics, not economics.”
His comments […] suggest that a Trump White House would eschew many of the free-market principles that have guided prior Republican administrations, including injecting itself into the personnel and long-term operating decisions of individual companies.