NEW YORK (AP) _ Here are the top 20 companies rated by Forbes magazine as the best performing small companies in the United States, ranked according to average annual return on equity over the past five years.

The list gives the company, home city, business, average return on equity and sales during the latest 12-month period.

-Melamine Chemicals, Donaldsonville, La., speciality chemicals, 262.7 percent, $33 million.

-King World Productions, Summit, N.J., television program distributor, 62 percent, $280.8 million.

-Quiksilver, Anaheim, Calif., casual sportswear, 61.3 percent, $44.6 million.

-Franklin Resources, San Francisco, fund management, 58.9 percent, $201.0 million.

-Respironics, Monroeville, Pa., respiratory medical products, 55.5 percent, $14.0 million.

-Value Line, New York, financial publisher, 54.3 percent, $73.1 million.

-PCS, Scottsdale, Ariz., prescription claims processing, 52.9 percent, $82.1 million.

-VM Software, Reston, Va., computer software, 50.9 percent, $36.1 million.

-International Dairy Queen, Minneapolis, fast-food restaurants, 48.2 percent, $234.6 million.

-Canonie Environmental Services, Porter, Ind., hazardous waste management, 45.1 percent, $47.2 million.

-GoodMark Foods, Raleigh, N.C., processed meats, 43.3 percent, $121.5 million.

-Shorewood Packaging, New York, paperboard packaging, 41.1 percent, $105.5 million.

-HWC Distribution, Houston, wire and cable products distributor, 40.6 percent, $109.5 million.

-Morino Associates, Vienna, Va., computer software, 38.4 percent, $44.7 million.

-Sigma Designs, Fremont, Calif., microcomputer graphic equipment, 37.6 percent, $58.7 million.

-T. Rowe Price Associates, Baltimore, mutual funds, 34.9 percent, $136.0 million.

-Mylan Labs, Pittsburgh, generic drugs, 34.7 percent, $97.5 million.

-WD-40, San Diego, lubricants, 34.7 percent, $77.6 million.

-Neutrogena, Los Angeles, cosmetics, 34.6 percent, $168.2 million.

-Trans World Music, Albany, N.Y., music and video stores, 34.3 percent, $219.1 million.