* TSX up 0.36 pct at 13,944.79, down 0.2 pct on week
* Nine of 10 main sectors advance
* RIM falls more than 14 percent, biggest decliner
* Investors mostly sidelined ahead of Monday’s election (Adds details)
By Ka Yan Ng
TORONTO, April 29 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index made a late-day dash higher on Friday as rallying resource issues overcame a plunge by BlackBerry maker Research In Motion RIM.TO.
The energy and materials groups, which together make up about 50 percent of the index’s weight, were up 1.12 percent and 0.67 percent respectively.
Suncor Energy (SU.TO), ahead 1.89 percent at C$43.61, and Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), up 2.44 percent at C$44.51, were the biggest heavyweight advancers on Friday. Potash Corp POT.TO rose 1.44 percent to C$53.45.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE finished 50.39 points, or 0.36 percent, higher at 13,944.79. Nine of its 10 sectors advanced.
The index fell 0.2 percent on the week.
“We seem have some difficulty breaking above 14,000,” said Elvis Picardo, an analyst and strategist at Global Securities in Vancouver.
He said gold issues have not been fully participating in the surge in the price of gold, which rose nearly 2 percent to near $1,570 on Friday, hitting a record high for a third consecutive day.
Overall, Toronto’s main index has lagged its U.S. counterparts recently, analysts said, even with rising commodity prices.
“After outperforming for an impressive seven straight years, Canadian stocks have suddenly lost some luster versus their U.S. counterparts,” said Robert Kavcic, economist at BMO Capital Markets.
“One reason for the somewhat sluggish performance in Canada has been what’s happening at the sector level.”
He noted that the index’s materials group, home to the gold miners, have been a relative drag, while the technology sector — after accounting for index weights — has been “the biggest driver of underperformance in Canada.”
The information technology group was the TSX’s lone decliner on Friday, down 3.09 percent, as RIM fell more than 14 percent to C$46.09 after it issued a profit warning late on Thursday.
RIM was the day’s biggest decliner, accounting for more than 10 percent more drag on the index than the second worst performer, Silver Wheaton SLW.TO.
“If you were to put RIM aside, you’re seeing a better bid to the energy complex, you’re still seeing better leadership within the metals and golds complex, you’re still seeing some rotation out of the financials that is moving into energy again,” said Sid Mokhtari, market technician and director of institutional equity research at CIBC World Markets.
“When we put it all together, we see that the positive cycle of the commodities — although it appears somewhat tired in the near term — structurally remains in good standing.”
Until the rally in the final moments of the session, the main index had been bouncing around the unchanged mark. Picardo said the flat performance can be attributed partly to market caution as the left-leaning New Democratic Party has closed in on the incumbent Conservatives in the polls ahead of Monday’s general election. [ID:nN29210714]
The gap between the Conservatives and the NDP — a distant third nationally at the start of the campaign — has narrowed to just five points. [ID:nN29120747]
“It could be that we’re seeing investors on the sidelines because of the election next week. There seems to be some degree of uncertainty about which way it’s going to go,” Picardo said.
“And I would say that’s been a pattern ever since the NDP surged in the polls.”
($1=$0.95 Canadian) (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Peter Galloway)