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This paper surveys and analyzes the state of the art of agent-mediated electronic commerce (e-commerce), concentrating particularly on the business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) aspects. From the consumer buying behavior perspective, agents are being used in the following activities: need identification, product brokering, buyer coalition formation, merchant brokering, and negotiation. The roles of agents in B2B e-commerce are discussed through the business-to-business transaction model that identifies agents as being employed in partnership formation, brokering, and negotiation. Having identified the roles for agents in B2C and B2B e-commerce, some of the key underpinning technologies of this vision are highlighted. Finally, we conclude by discussing the future directions and potential impediments to the wide-scale adoption of agent-mediated e-commerce.