CANADA STOCKS-TSX seesaws; commodity gains offset lower insurers
* Early near-2 percent gain fizzles
* Index reaches highest since Oct 14 before retreat
* Financials lower as two insurers report quarterly loss (Adds details)
TORONTO, May 7 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index was little changed on Thursday, as weaker-than-expected results in the insurance sector pulled financial shares lower, offsetting a firmer tone in commodity prices.
The index shot out of the gate at the open, rising close to 2 percent, but gains faded quickly and the index moved in and out of negative territory.
The price of oil slipped below $58 a barrel, off a fresh 2009 high, but was still firm as a surge in global stock markets raised expectations of economic improvement and a subsequent increase in demand for oil products. [ID:nSP407747]
The energy group was up 0.55 percent after accelerating close to a 4 percent gain at the open.
The materials sector, home to gold companies, was off 0.1 percent. The firmer price of the yellow metal, which rose sharply as a break through the previous day's high sparked technical buying, limited the fall in the materials group. [ID:nL7976027]
Gainers moving the overall index were from the commodity-related sectors, which make up about 40 percent of the index's weighting. Goldcorp (G.TO: Quote) rose 4.2 percent to C$36.95, while EnCana (ECA.TO: Quote) advanced 0.49 percent to C$61.50. Suncor was up 1.5 percent at C$35.70. Continued...