Here are five things you need to know this morning:

RBC and CIBC cap bank earnings with strong beats: Royal Bank and CIBC rounded out earnings from the big banks this morning, and the numbers from both lenders surprised to the upside. At RBC, adjusted profit came in at $2.92 a share, better than the $2.76 expected, mostly on strength in its capital markets unit, where profit hit an all-time high. The bank also fared better than expected on loan-loss provisions, coming in at $920 million, which was slightly lower than the $929 million forecast. CIBC numbers were equally impressive, with $1.75 per-share profit beating $1.65 expectations, and $514 million in provisions for credit losses. That’s less than the $567 million forecast

BMO outage: Bank of Montreal is experiencing an outage on its network this morning. A surge of clients in the U.S. and Canada reported problems logging into accounts on Thursday, and the bank is telling its customers via social media channels it is aware of a problem and is investigating. In a statement to CTV News and BNN Bloomberg, the bank said it is “experiencing a service disruption due to a false fire alarm that occurred overnight at one of our data centres.”

WestJet issues June 1 lockout notice with Encore pilots: WestJet has issued an advance lockout notice to the union that represents pilots at its Encore airline, noting that a work stoppage could happen as soon as this weekend. The airline took the step after the pilots failed to ratify a deal the two sides had struck earlier this month. The deadline for the lockout is 6 p.m. mountain time this coming Saturday. The Air Line Pilots Association, for its part, says after two weeks of bargaining since the rejected deal, the two sides remain far apart.

U.S. GDP numbers show slowing: The U.S. economy expanded at a 1.3 per cent annual pace in the first quarter, a slowdown from the 1.6 per cent advanced estimate and 3.2 per cent in the previous quarter. The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said Thursday morning that personal spending came in at an annualized rate of two per cent. That’s below the 2.2 per cent expected and down from the 2.5 per cent advanced estimate.

Brookfield in exclusive talks to take stake in France’s Neoen: TSX-listed Brookfield is in exclusive talks to acquire a majority stake in French renewable energy firm Neoen for US$6.6 billion, Bloomberg is reporting. Brookfield is seeking a 53 per cent controlling stake in the company but once it has acquired the majority stake, the company plans to offer to buy out other shareholders at the same price. At the price tag stated, it represents a 29 per cent premium to Neoen’s previous valuation and signals a return of interest in the alternative energy sector which was hit hard by rising interest rates.