CANADA STOCKS-TSX heads for 6th straight winning session on relief over U.S. rates

(Updates throughout with market reaction, background, details)

* TSX up 40.27 points, or 0.29 percent, to 14,018.93

* Seven of the TSX’s 10 main groups were higher

TORONTO, Oct 9 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Friday, gunning for its sixth straight winning session as investors embraced more risk after minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve’s September meeting showed it was in no hurry to hike interest rates.

The heavily weighted Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc provided the biggest boost to the index, jumping 3.6 percent to C$230.97, while the overall healthcare group rallied 2.6 percent.

The dovish Fed minutes helped gold prices soar to three-week highs, prompting shares of gold miners to follow the commodity’s rise. Goldcorp Inc lead the charge, rising 3.5 percent to C$18.29, while Barrick Gold Corp rallied 4.8 percent to C$9.78.

Gold futures rose 1.0 percent to $1,156.6 an ounce.

The materials group, where miners and other resource names reside, jumped 2.2 percent.

At 11:05 a.m. EDT (1505 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index rose 40.27 points, or 0.29 percent, to 14,018.93.

Of the index’s 10 main groups, seven were in positive territory. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by 139 to 99 for a 1.40-to-1 ratio.

Overall trading was choppy, and briefly turned negative as energy and financial stocks tempered the broader gains.

Oil and gas shares shadowed seesawing crude oil prices, which at one point had their biggest rise in more than six years. The commodity was pinched by profit-taking, however, with investors closing positions ahead of the weekend.

TransCanada Corp was the biggest drag on the downside, sliding 1.4 percent to C$45.22, while Encana Corp retreated 2.9 percent to C$11.42. Energy stocks eased 0.2 percent.

U.S. crude was up 0.9 percent to $49.89 a barrel, while Brent lost 0.2 percent to $52.95.

Toronto-Dominion Bank lead the financials retreat, dipping 0.4 percent to C$53.32, while the overall sector was off 0.4 percent. (Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)