Gold edged up on Tuesday as a deepening political crisis in Italy provoked a second day of heavy selling on European financial markets, though a buoyant dollar kept the precious metal's gains in check.
Spot gold was 0.4 percent higher at $1,302.96 per ounce at 11:52 GMT, while U.S. gold futures for June delivery fell 0.1 percent to $1,302.40.
Italy's president set the country on a path to early elections on Monday, appointing a former International Monetary Fund official as interim prime minister with the task of planning fosnap polls and passing the next budget.
Investors fear repeat elections - which could take place as soon as August - might serve as a quasi-referendum on Italy's role in the European Union and euro zone and strengthen the country's eurosceptic parties even further.
But keeping a lid on gold's gains, the turmoil in Italy pushed the dollar up to a 6-1/2 month high versus the euro, making dollar-priced gold costlier for non-U.S. investors.