New Consumer Magazine - Cliona O. Conaill - Money is so inextricably woven into the fabric of our lives that it has become fundamental to our survival in the West. It affects almost everything we do, and yet we actually know very little about it. However, understanding of the nature of money will empower us as consumers. Money is not an actual thing. It is only an agreement between businesses, banks, governments, communities and nations to treat something as though it has value.