A hearing held May 1 on a request by Scudder Kemper Investments of Boston for a preliminary injunction against Robert Hoffman, Scudder's former managing director, gave no clues as to the possible outcome of pending arbitration between the two parties, according to an industry lawyer.

The outcome of arbitration is often won or lost in preliminary hearings, but Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein did not appear to take sides in the Scudder case, said Nancy Shilepsky, an employment lawyer with Perkins, Smith & Cohen LLP of Boston. Instead, the judge issued a preliminary injunction that looks very similar to the temporary restraining order initially issued against Hoffman, she said.

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