Precious metals rallied on Wednesday with gold hitting a near three-week high as weaker than expected US durables goods orders data intensified the day's dollar selloff which was triggered by the dovish remarks of Chicago Fed's Charles Evans.

Durable goods orders fell 1.4% in February after recoding a 2% growth in January, data showed on Wednesday. Analysts had been expecting a drop to 0.4%. Also, the January growth was a downward revision from 2.8%.

Ex transportation, orders fell 0.4% against the consensus of a 0.3% growth. Moreover, January's 0.3% growth was revised to a 0.7% drop.

The data added to the dovish sentiment created by Evans' comments who said that there is no need to hurry for a rate hike in the US.

"I see no compelling reason for us to be in a hurry to tighten financial conditions until then," Evans said in remarks prepared for delivery to the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum in London. He added that 5% is the unemployment rate that he sees sustainable against the 5.5% where it is currently at.

Gold rose to $1198.10 on Wednesday, its highest since 6 March, and from the previous close of $1193.20. Silver jumped to $17.07 from $16.09, and it is just a shade away from Monday's one-month high of $17.10.

Platinum and palladium too rose aided by the dollar weakness on Wednesday with the former hitting a 2-week high of $1151.14 and the latter reversing much of the previous day's sharp losses that had taken it near a multi-week low. Palladium rose to $769.61 from Tuesday's close of $761.50.

The US dollar index dropped to 96.54 from Tuesday's close of 97.19, further distancing from the 12-year high of 100.40 touched on 13 March when euro was worth a 12-year low of $1.0462.

The PMI data from Markit for March released on Tuesday were positive for the Eurozone and also the German Ifo data on Wednesday, weighing the dollar further down helping the dollar-denominated assets like precious metals.