As many as five million UK employees put in unpaid overtime in January, a new report has revealed.

Coming as growing numbers of employers look to increase production while cutting down on their overheads in order to weather the current economic storm, the ‘Long House Culture’ report published by the Trades Union Conference (TUC) has highlighted a growth in unpaid overtime.

Indeed, according to its figures, the typical worker put in an extra seven hours and six minutes a week for no extra pay over the course of the month, with those employed in the finance sector among the hardest-pushed.

However, the union’s research also found that the proportion of insurance and pensions professionals doing unpaid overtime has fallen by 7.5 per cent over the past year.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber noted: "The recession is bringing new pressure for people to work unpaid overtime."

Report author Professor Cary Cooper also called on employers to show "commitment" to their staff to ensure that they are not pushed too far.