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SMALL INVESTORS GAIN 4.62%, FOR AVERAGE PROFIT OF $7,817

SHARE SMALL INVESTORS GAIN 4.62%, FOR AVERAGE PROFIT OF $7,817

The party goes on for small investors, who gained 4.62 percent, or $2,512, in the third quarter of 1995, according to Money magazine's Small Investor Index. That represents an annual rate of 18.5 percent.

The advance continued this year's string of strong quarterly showings, bringing the average investor's 1995 profits to $7,817, a pickup of 15.93 percent since Jan. 1. Investors earned only 0.08 percent through the first nine months of 1994.Stocks, which account for 43.3 percent of the typical individual's holdings, led the way, climbing 9.05 percent and adding $2,101 to the portfolio. In September, the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 4800 for the first time and the NASDAQ index set a record high of 1067.

"Technology stocks continued to do well over the last quarter," said Hugh Johnson, president of First Albany Asset Management. "And utilities, drug and food companies did best because of fears that the economy was slowing."

Bonds, 16.2 percent of the portfolio, gained 1.74 percent, contributing $216. Taxable bonds, 12.6 percent of the portfolio, inched up 1.43 percent, or $100, while municipal bonds, 3.6 percent of the total, returned 2.61 percent, or $54.

Certificates of deposit and money funds, which together represent 33 percent of the portfolio, returned 2 percent, adding $173. Rounding out the portfolio, real estate, 0.91 percent of holdings, increased 4.32 percent and contributed $22. Gold, 0.54 percent of the portfolio, was essentially flat.

Last week, the Money Index, which tracks the value of the typical investor's holdings, slid $94 to $56,881. Stocks lost $30, and bonds fell $74. CDs and money funds added $14, while gold dropped $3.