The credit crunch means that Brits are working the equivalent of an extra day each week, according to new research by recruitment consultants Badenoch and Clark.

According to their figures, this is due to the employers cutting jobs or not replacing staff who decide to leave. These money saving tactics are resulting in existing employees working harder as they take on additional time-consuming responsibilities. Those between 45-54 are most likely to stretch themselves to put in extra hours, and banking and finance industries are the most affected by the crunch.

Neil Wilson, managing director of the consultants, said: “People are being asked to put in more hours in the office and that is clearly starting to take its toll. Employers who ignore the happiness of their workers leave themselves open to a mass exodus as soon as the economy picks up.”