More than half of the UK population has never received financial advice or cannot recall receiving any, research from the Money Advice Service (MAS) has suggested.
A survey commissioned by the organisation found that 52% of adults admitted to never receiving or could not recall if or when they last received advice about managing their own money and everyday finances.
This would equate to 25.6m people, with a further 21% (10.3m) not receiving any advice in the last year.
Of those who did receive advice, 32% said it came from a financial adviser not connected with their bank or building society. Meanwhile, 28% received their advice from a bank or building society.
The MAS pointed out that its survey did not take into account the difference between regulated and unregulated advice and included discussions with friends and family.
The findings are based on an online survey of 2178 adults by Yougov, undertaken between 29-31 August, and were published as the MAS launched a new TV, print and online advertising campaign to make people aware of the service.
Starting with a commercial aired during Coronation Street last night, the campaign is set to run for six weeks, centring on the slogan ‘What does MA think?'.
The campaign, setting out situations where the 'free' service could be useful, is being funded by part of the £20m set aside for marketing in its 2012/13 budget.
MAS chairman Gerard Lemos said: "The research confirms the advice gap is still a chasm and, if we are to be a nation that saves, plans and prepares for the unexpected, we need to be creative and reach many millions of people to tell them they can get free and unbiased advice from the Money Advice Service."
A previous advertising campaign, launched in June 2011, introduced the service to the public with a promise of "independent and unbiased" advice.
Joined as head of strategy, multi asset, in June
Group income protection
Nine in 10 do not have income protection
Set to become part of Single Financial Guidance Body