Apple's stock rallied last night, closing at $533.90, $15.07 higher than the closing price on Monday.

Today reports are appearing with the usual speculation as to what might have caused the new found confidence, although the most likely reason is news that the US government is moving closer to a resolution on the so-called fiscal cliff.

Other suggestions are that Apple's investors reacted well to an "outperform" rating at Cowen and news that Samsung said it would withdraw European injunction requests against Apple.

All stocks closed higher on Tuesday after the announcement that a deal would soon be made in Washington to avoid the Fiscal Cliff.

House Speaker John Boehner proposed a 'Plan B' in which Bush-era tax cuts for people making less than $1 million would be extended, and a plan on spending cuts would be deferred, however the White House rejected it. Negotiations continue though, with one concession being to move the tax goal posts to $400,000 in income.

On a global scale, there was good news in Europe as ratings agency Standard & Poor's lifted Greece's credit rating to "B-minus" with a stable outlook, notes CNBC. According to S&P there is a "strong determination" to keep Greece in the Euro.

There was also a rally on the Asian markets on Tuesday.

Amidst the austerity related concerns in the US, at least eight Apple analysts have lowered their 2013 price targets in the past week, notes Fortune, which has a complete list of analyst price targets.

Topeka Capital's Brian White tops the list with a target of $1,111, just below him are three analysts with targets of $900, including Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster. At the bottom of the list is ACI Research's Ed Zabiski with a $270 estimation made last January, although the lowest, recent, estimations come from Pacific Crest's Andy Hargreaves ($565) and Citigroup's Glen Yeung ($575).

Follow Karen Haslam on Twitter / Follow MacworldUK on Twitter

Related:

iPhone 6 spring launch is reason for iPhone 5 production slow down, analyst

AAPL still on track for $1,111 says analyst

Apple loses $187 in 84 days, what's to blame?

Apple share price recovers, $1,000 still possible as long as Cook copies Jobs

Analyst expects $900 from AAPL, admits clients are giving him an 'earful' over Apple stock