AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas had the fifth-highest number of jobless claims compared to other states last week. The numbers here also soared by more than 600 percent in March.

Last week, nearly 276,000 Texans filed for unemployment insurance benefits. That's up 120,000 over the week before, which was also a record. Both numbers are higher than the worst week of the Great Recession.

“We’re living in a recession right now,” said Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar. “As Texas, the vast majority of the tax collections in the state treasury are sales tax collections and with a lack of economic activity, we expect those numbers are going to very rapidly drop off and coming into the next several months as well.”

In addition to the COVID-19 outbreak, Texas’ finances have also been threatened by Saudi Arabia and Russia’s disagreement over oil production which sent the price of oil spiraling downward.

“This is not going to be a ‘V’ shaped recovery. It’s going to be a much more prolonged “U” shape recovery,” Hegar said.

Hegar said he will make a recommendation to state leaders about what kind of savings could occur if state agencies immediately start cutting expenses.

Click the video link above to watch our full interview with Comptroller Hegar.