Apple stock seems set to climb following key analyst forecasts last night.

Goldman Sachs analyst David Bailey advised clients to buy Apple stock during any dips in stock value across the next three months.

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster predicted higher-than-anticipated iPod sales. His statements were echoed by analysts from Merril Lynch.

The Goldman Sachs analyst met with Apple chief operating officer Tim Cook at a Goldman Sachs event this week.

Bailey emerged from that meeting "very confident" about the firm, saying: "Apple continues to reinforce its emphasis on and ability to innovate at levels that separate it from other companies," Forbes reports.

The analyst pointed at Apple's innovation-focused corporate culture and predicted Apple will easily sell its target ten million units of the new iPhone by 2008, even at $500 per sale.

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster this week told clients that his extrapolation of January's NPD sales data suggests Apple will sell between 11 and 12 million iPods in the current quarter.

Prevailing expectations cite up to ten million iPod sales in the quarter. Munster's figures suggest that while the March quarter may be a weak one in comparison to the record-breaking, 21 million iPod-selling December quarter, it needn't be as weak as expected.

Merrill Lynch analyst Richard Farmer agrees. He predicts 10.2 million sales, potentially climbing to 10.8 million.

"January NPD iPod unit growth was 35 per cent year-over-year, but only up 8 per cent when adjusting for the extra selling week in January 2007," he wrote.

Overnight, Apple stock was upgraded to 'overweight' from 'equal weight' by Lehman Bros. analyst Harry Blount, who believes recent weakness on the company's stock represents a buying opportunity for canny investors.