Seduced by tales from experienced players of easy billions to be made on the markets I thought I could use my alts to do some low involvement trading, logging on once a day or so to check on the status of buy and sell orders. Instead I found that I could neither sell or buy anything unless I was actively trading. By actively trading I mean watching my orders and adjusting prices up or down by 0.01 ISK in order to be at the top of the relevant pile. Although this doesn't sound like a time consuming process I found that it ate up all of my EVE playtime for the last few days.
I guess a player with multiple accounts could do this in the background on a second account but I found the hassle of logging in and out of alts to be tedious so I left my combat oriented main safely docked in station while I indulged my capitalist urges.
After a week of intensive trading I came to a fairly sudden realisation that I want to do something else again. I woke Marb Pelico from the attic where he has been studying skill books for the last week and did level 3 "Blockade" in my Hurricane. It was nice to be in combat again rather than spending my time looking at the market screen. I think I will go back to missions for a while and take a break from trading.
I did make a determined effort to sell my inventory and close out any open orders before switching back to Marb. My final accounts for a weeks trading (with an 800k skill point alt) look like this:
Inital Capital Invested: 20 Million Isk
Closing Inventory: approx 1.5 Million ISK
Closing Cash Balance: 62 Million Isk.
There you have it - I tripled my investment within a week. Although 42 million is not a fortune in EVE terms I am pleased enough with how it went. Those earnings could be scaled up with a higher level of capital. In fact I am pretty confident I could earn more from trading than from missioning if I chose to do it full time. I don't think I want to do trading and missioning at the same time though. Each on its own is enough for me. Trying to do both would require more commitment than I am prepared to put in to EVE at the moment.