Italy's resounding no lifts gold price

Gold received a boost in Asian trading on Monday after a crushing defeat for Italy's leader Matteo Renzi in a referendum about constitutional reform in the world's eighth largest economy.

Gold for delivery in February, the most active contract on the Comex market in New York, hit a high of $1,190.20 an ounce, up just over 1% from Friday's close, on fears about increased euro zone instability and a fresh blow to the single currency.

With the No vote prevailing, Italy's shaky banking system could also be plunged into further turmoil with many of the country's financial institutions already threatened by insolvency.  The country's banks sit on about $400 billion of non-performing loans, but EU rules prohibit Italy from undertaking a taxpayer bailout like the one in the US in 2008.