The Australian and NZ dollars weakened against their major counterparts in the Asian session on Tuesday, as the strict lockdown measures and travel restrictions to stop the spread of new strain of Covid-19 dampened hopes of a global economic recovery.

Several countries had announced travel bans to the U.K. due to fears about the virus variant.

Oil prices dropped on fears that the new virus variant crisis could slow recovery in fuel demand.

The approval of a $900 billion relief package by U.S. Congressional leaders on Monday helped limit the downside.

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed that Australia retail sales surged a seasonally adjusted 7.0 percent on month in November - coming in at A$31.623 billion.

That blew away expectations for a decline of 0.6 percent following the 1.4 percent increase in October.

The aussie slipped to 1.6191 against the euro and 0.7591 versus the greenback, reversing from its early highs of 1.6118 and 0.7546, respectively. The aussie is seen finding support around 1.65 against the euro and 0.70 versus the greenback.

The Australian currency pulled back from its early highs of 78.42 against the yen and 0.9750 against the loonie and was worth 78.05 and 0.9721, respectively. Should the aussie slides further, it may challenge support around 75.00 against the yen and 0.94 against the loonie.

The kiwi edged down to 0.7052 against the greenback, 72.96 against the yen and 1.7326 against the euro, following its early highs of 0.7106, 73.43 and 1.7198, respectively. Next key support for the kiwi is likely seen around 0.68 against the greenback, 70.00 against the yen and 1.75 against the euro.

The kiwi touched 1.0715 against the aussie, its weakest level since November 9. On the downside, 1.10 is possibly seen as its next support level.

Looking ahead, U.S. GDP data for the third quarter, consumer confidence for December and existing home sales for November are due in the New York session.